Rallying the passion of 4 million people worldwide, Relay For Life events raise funds that help fuel the mission of the American Cancer Society.
"People really enjoy this event - this is the fifth year that we've done it so we're hoping to reach a goal of$50,000 in five years so I think people now look for it", said Dr. Bonnie Jones, chairperson of the Bark for Life. As the survivors walk, other event participants will cheer them on in a demonstration of support and celebration. That research is performed at facilities like Vanderbilt Medical Center, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.
Highlights include live music, DJs, dance-a-thons, karaoke, auction items, games and contests, theme laps, tributes to cancer survivors, memorial Luminaria ceremonies, food, raffles.
Such was the case Friday evening as the 2017 Relay for Life opening ceremonies began, promptly at 6 p.m.
Prior to the lighting of the relay torch and the cutting of the ribbon kicking off the Survivor's Lap, Walsh told the audience of some 500, "We will light up the day and finish the fight against this disgusting disease that has affected every family in Putnam County".
When cancer survivors and their caregivers line up for the Survivors' Lap at Relay for Life, it's hard not to be overcome by emotion, standing on the sidelines, clapping for those who have battled this disease and won.