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UPDATED: Benefit relay runs into the night at Central Park

Money raised will help fund services for SCV cancer victims, medical researc

Posted: May 28, 2009 8:31 p.m.
Updated: May 30, 2009 11:10 a.m.

Marlene Andreoni, left, looks over Relay for Life literature with volunteer Agnes Russell. For more information about the event, visit www.scvrelay.org.

 

For 24 hours starting this morning, the cancer warriors of the Santa Clarita Valley will walk in remembrance, in celebration of life and in survivorship during the 10th annual Santa Clarita Valley Relay for Life.

The event, which raised $560,028.69 in 2008, benefits the American Cancer Society and the money raised will be used to fund services for cancer victims in the SCV and for research.

A recent kickoff for the SCV Relay event attracted more than 100 guests and celebrated the anniversary of Relay for Life, which was started in 1985 in Tacoma, Wash. by Dr. Gordy Klatt, a Tacoma colorectal surgeon, who wanted to enhance the income of his local
American Cancer Society office. He decided to personally raise money.

John Fortman, chairman of the 2009 Relay, said the goal this year was to improve on last year’s 130 teams.

At press time, nearly 140 groups had signed up to participate. Participation requires that one person from each team be on the track — in relay — for the full 24 hours of the event.

“We are the third-largest relay in California and the largest relay in Southern California,” Fortman said. “We have a goal of raising $600,000 this year. It’s going to be tough, but I think we’re going to do it.”

The 2009 SCV Relay for Life kicked off at 9 a.m. today with opening ceremonies followed by a Survivor Lap in which cancer survivors ran a celebration lap before the relay teams took to the track.

The 9 p.m. luminaria ceremony is a touching event in which lit luminaria bags are placed around the track in remembrance of those who have lost their cancer battles, those who won and those still fighting.

The family-friendly event will be held at Central Park off Bouquet Canyon Road in Saugus. Music, food, speakers, entertainment and games will be offered during the full 24 hours of the event as teams raise money for the American Cancer Society.

 

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