Busy time for Team Hope

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE - Vic­to­ria Vanier

When I imag­ine what it must be like tak­ing part in a Re­lay for Life walkathon, walk­ing around a track all through the night, usu­ally un­der rainy skies, it doesn’t sound so ap­peal­ing. And yet when­ever I speak with some­one who has ac­tu­ally taken part in the event, they speak glow­ingly of the ex­pe­ri­ence. The mem­bers of “Team

Hope”, a fundrais­ing group with mem­bers from sev­eral dif­fer­ent mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties in the re­gion, who I spoke with were no ex­cep­tion.

“The group started about seven years ago and we have around fif­teen mem­bers. Our team is made of friends and fam­ily from Len­noxville, Comp­ton, Water­ville, North Hat­ley and Ayer’s Cliff. Most team mem­bers have been af­fected by can­cer di­rectly or through a fam­ily or friend - we all want to find a cure,” said Pat Leonard who has been the cap­tain of the team for six years. “I first joined just be­cause it was a good cause. But in Oc­to­ber of 2010 I lost my mother to can­cer, so now it’s per­sonal,” she added.

“A Re­lay for Life event is so in­spir­ing. When peo­ple walk around the track they look for their lu­mi­nary (a spe­cial can­dle bought to hon­our a loved one that is lit and placed in a bag along the track). And it’s beau­ti­ful when they let the doves go. Be­cause can­cer has touched so many lives, walk­ing and stay­ing up all night is not a big deal,” said Nancy Suitor, from Comp­ton, who’s been on Team Hope for three years and usu­ally heads up their dance fundrais­ers. “We’ve got a good group who do big things and lit­tle things to­gether to raise money. It’s more fun when ev­ery­one’s gung-ho!”

Caro­line and Mahlon Grapes, also from Comp­ton, have been tak­ing part in the fundrais-

Photo pro­vided by Pat Leonard

Team Hope had a pen­guin theme go­ing on at last year’s Re­lay for Life event in Ma­gog. The team mem­bers in yel­low shirts are all can­cer sur­vivors.

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