Sur­viv­ing to en­joy life

The Southern Gazette - - EDITOR’S VIEWPOINT - BY GE­ORGE MACVICAR THE SOUTH­ERN GAZETTE Ge­orge Macvicar Pho­tos

If you want to smile, feel alive and en­joy the com­pany of oth­ers then join a sur­vivor and their friends!

It was can­cer sur­vivors Aug. 24 cel­e­brat­ing the 9th an­nual Burin Penin­sula Can­cer Re­lay for Life at the Track and Field Com­plex in Marys­town. And dur­ing the process the cel­e­bra­tion raised over $62,000 for can­cer re­search and sup­port.

The Marys­town town coun­cil rec­og­nized can­cer sur­vivors with a lun­cheon at Ho­tel Marys­town and then they turned out on the Track and Field off Har­ris Drive with their friends and sup­port­ers.

Com­mit­tee mem­bers, in­clud­ing co-chairs Marys­town Deputy-Mayor Keith Keat­ing and Coun. Al­bert Stacey, wel­comed 92 sur­vivors, their rel­a­tives and friends for 12 hours of ex­er­cis­ing, fel­low­ship and sim­ple fun.

MP Judy Foote, a 13-year can­cer sur­vivor her­self, told par­tic­i­pants can­cer is not some­thing one wants in their lives.

“But it’s part of life, part of what we have to deal with.”

She added “It’s im­por­tant to sup­port oth­ers and re­mem­ber those who have gone.

“I want to thank you for your help. I was one who needed your help 13 years ago.”

Mayor Sam Sy­nard sug­gested the re­lay was a time to re­mem­ber those who are no longer here, those who are suf­fer­ing with can­cer and those who have sur­vived.

He praised co-chairs Mr. Keat­ing and Mr. Stacey for their ef­forts over the nine years the re­lay has been held in Marys­town.

Donna Gear of the Cana­dian Can­cer So­ci­ety said this was her third re­lay in Marys­town and thanked ev­ery­one present for their ef­forts.

“It’s be­cause of you, you guys are the rea­son I do what I do.”

Mr. Keat­ing noted the num­ber of teams for this year’s re­lay had fallen off to 19 but he in­di­cated there were just as many par­tic­i­pants as in past years. Co-Chair Al­bert Stacey agreed. “Even though the teams are down, as I walk around I see a lot of you who are re­turn­ing.”

The re­lay on the field be­gan with a sur­vivor’s lap around the track, fol­lowed by sur­vivors’ sup­port­ers and then all the 19 teams made their ini­tial lap to­gether. A lu­mi­nary trib­ute, with can­dles lit in­side bags for those who have passed away or sur­vived, was held in the early evening.

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For ev­ery can­cer sur­vivor, there are just as many and more sup­port­ers to make sure peo­ple sur­vive this dis­ease.

A proud poppy is can­cer sur­vivor Harold Foote of Burin. He’s more than happy to be able to push his grand­daugh­ter, Is­abella, in her stroller.

Mary Beth Far­rell had par­tic­i­pants lim­ber­ing up for their af­ter­noon and evening of walk­ing around the track in the an­nual Re­lay for Life.

Th­ese sur­vivors proved can­cer can be beaten. There were 92 in the Marys­town Re­lay for Life, young and old, and the num­ber con­tin­ues to grow daily.

The Far­rell fam­ily and their friends from Lit­tle Bay are more than will­ing to jump into the boxing and take on the (can­cer) go­rilla in a bat­tle for sur­vival and ‘fight like an Ir­ish girl’.

Marys­town Coun. Al­bert Stacey, co-chair with Keith Keat­ing of the Burin Penin­sula Can­cer Re­lay for Life, ap­plauded the can­cer sur­vivors as they lapped the Track and Field Com­plex Aug. 24. Mr. Stacey has a very per­sonal at­tach­ment to the back­ground...

Just like his com­mit­tee cochair Al­bert Stacey in the back­ground, Marys­town deputy-mayor Keith Keat­ing is more than pleased to of­fer his time and com­mit­ment to the Can­cer Re­lay for Life. On the pi­ano is per­former Marc Brown.

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