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Pendleton Relay For Life a success

FRANKLIN — This year the Pendleton County Relay For Life added $15,000 to the more than $1 million it has raised for the American Cancer Society since beginning RFL in 1999.

“This amount was less than in years past, but every dollar counts in the fight against cancer,” said Freda Calhoun Borror, a member of the board of directors.

Donations can still be made until Aug. 31 by accessing website: www.relayforlife.org\pendletonwv or by sending a check made out to the American Cancer Society, c/o Holly Beachler, Box 487, Franklin WV, 26807.

Pendleton County has won four awards for being number one as the “highest per capita fundraiser in the state,” former chairman Don Harris said several years ago.

“Our people have stood up, pulled together as a community to fight cancer,” Harris added.

The Relay For Life site was moved this year to the Treasure Mountain Festival Building and the grassy parking lot next door.

More than 30 survivors were introduced by Borror and took a lap walking around the park. Family and caregivers walked a second lap, then were joined by all the participants. Later the survivors and caregivers enjoyed a reception sponsored by the Franklin Women of the Moose.

The luminaria bags were decorated by the donors who placed a can of food inside to be donated to CAN or the Franklin Senior Center.

“Instead of a flaming candle, the illumination was provided by a tea candle set on top of the food can which also added necessary weight to the bag. This would have allowed us to set up the bags inside the building instead of on the grassy lot in case of inclement weather,” Borror said.

“We can also use the same tea candles next year,” she added with a laugh.

Bailey Coleman sang for the luminaria service.

The Relay’s planning committee included chairman Mike Alkire and members at a large of Borror, Mary Bowers, Bernadette Tierney, Denise Hevener, Judy Snyder, Inez Bogan and Joyce Burgoyne.

The teams which competed to raise the most money in past years were changed into one big team this year, Borror said.

“We consolidated into one team, because in the end, we were working for one cause. In working as one team, we took away the stress of making up competing teams,” chairman Alkire said.

Donations are used to fund “I Can Cope,” an educational series on living with cancer; “Reach to Recovery,” aid to women recovering from breast cancer; “Man to Man,” a support group for men with prostate cancer; “Road to Recovery,” transportation for ambulatory patients to cancer treatments; and “Wigs and Prosthetics,” available free of charge to cancer patients requesting them.

“Donations also help with lodging and anti-nausea medication,” Borror said. “Locals need to call 1-800-227-2345 or go to www.cancer.org to get assistance.”

Following opening remarks by Alkire and an invocation by Pastor Mike Loudermilk Saturday, Mahala Alt sang the National Anthem and led the Pledge of Allegiance with Allen Moats presenting the American Flag. The guest speaker was Emily Hott, a caregiver to both her parents. Borror introduced the cancer survivors.

Entertainment was provided by DJ P.J. Landes. Other activities included a silent auction, a water balloon toss, cake walks, a dime pitch and a frisbee pitch.

Pendleton County is one of 6,000 communities in 20 countries that has taken up the fight against cancer, Borror said.

“Pendleton County gathers together in this relay to celebrate, remember, and fight back against cancer. We won’t stop doing this. This is our 21st year, and, as the Cancer Society says, ‘we won’t stop until there is a cure!'” Borror added.