Support ACS & JSU's Relay
Jamie M. Eubanks
JSU News Bureau
JACKSONVILLE -- April 4, 2002 -- Today, more than 1,500 people could die of cancer. That adds up to more than 553,000 who will lose their lives this year to this devastating disease. But people across Calhoun County are working together to lower these numbers by participating in Relay For Life. And Jacksonville State University has developed a team for the first time.
Relay For Life is the American Cancer Society's signature event. It is an overnight event that remembers those who have lost the fight against cancer and honors those who have survived.
Calhoun County's Relay For Life will be held at Oxford High School's football stadium. There will be activities for all ages: games for the kids, concerts and aerobics. At the same time, members will walk around the stadium. Each team will be represented at all times by at least one team member.
The Relay will be held May 10 from 6:00 p.m. to May 11 at 6:00 a.m. And Calhoun County's goal is to raise $150,000.00.
"If there's one word I've heard about this event, it's FUN," says Joy Summers, secretary of special services at JSU and co-captain of the team.
And JSU has its own cancer survivor, Pam Torruella. Pam was diagnosed with breast cancer in December of 2000. She had surgery in January of 2001 and is now a 15-month survivor of cancer.
"It means a lot to see my coworkers involved in Relay For Life," says Pam, whose karate school has also sponsored a Relay For Life team. "The more teams involved, the better chances we have for surviving and the better chances doctors have for finding cures and funding research."
And Pam was the inspiration for JSU's new team. "While this is a very worthy cause, our number one reason for starting a team was our respect and admiration for the way Pam has fought this disease," says Martha Mitchell, director of admissions at JSU and co-captain of the team. "Cancer is a disease that touches everybody's life somehow."
JSU's Relay For Life team consists of 44 members of JSU faculty, staff and students. "This is a really good number, considering it's our first year and with the little amount of advertising we have done," Summers says.
Each team also sells luminaries in memory of those who've lost their fight with cancer and honors those who have overcome the disease. There will be a special lighting ceremony at Relay For Life, and each name will be called out.
The team is also accepting donations that are tax deductible. If there are any cancer survivors in Calhoun County who are not currently involved with Relay For Life and would like information on special activities available to them at the relay, contact Pam Torruella at 256-782-5268.
For more information about Relay For Life or to make a donation, contact co-captains Martha Mitchell at 256-782-5363 and Joy Summers at 256-782-5557. Or you can see any of the other 42 members: Susan Adderhold, Rodney Bailey, Dana Bonds, Linda Bright, Vivian Brown, Kathy Cambron, Terry Casey, Tracy Casey, Mary Cheatwood, Connie Edge, Vivian Garner, Gina Glass, Karen Gregg, Rosemary Harper, Ellen Hartsaw, Robert Hayes, April Jackson, Sandy Lynch, Gina Mabrey, Mary Macargel, Carra McWhorter, Dave Merriss, Elizabeth Milewicz, Pat Miller, Kelly Osterbind, Jennifer Parnell, Norma Penny, Doug Phillips, Ann Poe, Diane Price, Natalie Raulerson, Linda Shelton, Audrey Smelley, Mary Smith, Sandra Sudduth, Tatiana Tatum, Amiee Thrasher, Venita Toney, Kim Weatherford, Carla Willingham, Teresa Wilson and Debbie Wood.
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