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Charlotte Amalie
Saturday, June 15, 2024
HomeNewsArchivesRelay for Life Draws Hundreds to Battle Breast Cancer

Relay for Life Draws Hundreds to Battle Breast Cancer

Hundreds of people – women and men, girls and boys – turned out for the annual Relay for Life Saturday afternoon, but before they could walk, they had to march.

Though the event was a serious subject – breast cancer and the effort to raise funds to combat it – there was a festive mood in the air as the participants walked and supported life.

“This event generates dollars that are used in this community to help people who are battling cancer,” said Lorraine Baa, the new executive director of the St. Croix chapter of the American Cancer Society.

Everybody knows times are hard, she said. The oil refinery has closed, jobs are scarce, and people are scared. But when it came time for the annual Relay, the community came together, she said.

Money raised by the Relay is used to help local people who fight the disease. Once they’ve been qualified, the Cancer Society provides them with money for transportation, some medication, and other necessities.

“We help families right here that are fighting this disease,” Baa said. “That’s why we have this event, and that’s why the community supports it.”

As the new executive director on the island, she has not seen the St. Croix event before. People told her as the event got under way that there seemed to be couple of tents missing, a slightly smaller gathering, but that didn’t keep people from turning out. In fact, Baa said, there were actually more teams signed up this year than ever before.

“At least people are trying,” she said.

All through the night, raining or clear, marchers kept circling the track: at least one member from each team going all the time. The teams had garnered pledged donations for every lap, and they were determined to keep going.

Marchers included women who have survived breast cancer and many who were honoring the memory of a loved one who lost the battle with the disease.

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