Relay for Life

Today I signed up as a participant in the UW-Madison chapter of the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event on April 11 & 12 to support cancer funding and research. If there is one thing that I have learned over the last several months, it is that anyone can get cancer (or, as I’m fond of saying “come down with cancer”), and the disease no longer looms in the back of my mind as something that happens to others — even to ones I love — but rather as something that happens far too often to far too many people, from young children to the elderly, and, of course, as something that has happened to me.

Just to give you an idea, according to the American Cancer Society’s latest report, “Cancer Facts & Figures 2007,” there were over 1.4 million new cases of cancer diagnosed last year alone. In 2008, over a half a million people are expected to die from some type of cancer — that’s more than 1,500 people PER DAY. Cancer, the second leading killer in the U.S., accounts for 1 in 4 deaths in this country. It kills indiscriminately, and as if that were not enough to consider how crucial funding is, the Bush administration’s latest budget has cut cancer funding, including programs for breast, colon, skin, prostrate, ovarian, and blood cancers.

It is a life-altering condition that I would not wish on another living soul. Unfortunately, we have already been touched (rather gently) by it, and many of us will be touched at least once more in our lives. It demands attention — and money.

You can help me reach my fundraising goal of $1000 $2000 by visiting my Relay For Life “personal page.”

Thanks in advance.

UPDATE: So far I’ve raised about $350, so I’ve upped my goal to $2000.

I’ll keep you posted on how I’m doing every so often…

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