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‘WE DO THIS FOR THEM’

South Boston News
Luminaria were dedicated to those who lost their life to cancer.
SoVaNow.com / May 01, 2013
Hundreds of people took steps to overcome cancer Friday night at Robbins Park during the Relay for Life run/walk fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.

Teams of cancer survivors, friends, family and caregivers took turns walking or running laps around the park to raise some $35,000, said event volunteer Madolyn Hayne.

The evening began with a special dinner for the survivors of cancer and their families at the Clarksville Community Center. More than 80 people were fed by volunteers including Marian, Portia and Elsie Burwell, who donated their time in honor of family members who died from the disease.

Said Elsie Burwell: “We each lost a bunch of people to cancer” — from brain cancer to ovarian cancer to leukemia. “We do this for them.”

At 7 p.m., survivors joined the teams at Robbins Park for an evening filled with food, music, raffles, and special prizes. The mission of the evening was not lost amidst the frivolity as visitors walked among the luminaria placed around the field, searching for the names of friends and family who are cancer victims.

As dark descended on Robbins, the Relay for Life closed with the lighting of the luminaria. Robbins Park glowed from the lights of hundreds of candles, laid out in a sunburst pattern to symbolize hope that one day soon the battle against cancer will be won.

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