People in Grande Prairie will spend the next nine hours walking in support of those battling cancer. The annual Relay for Life event started at 12 p.m. on Saturday and had more than 100 cancer survivors, family members and friends hit the track at Legion Field where the walk started in early 2000.
As a child, now 12-year-old Josh Bauman fought and beat cancer before he even took his first steps. Since then, he and his mother Bobbi have done the walk every year since 2009.
“I do it for all the people that have cancer and have survived it and that are still going through that process and [for] all the families that have to have trouble with their little boy in the hospital, says Josh.”
Bobbi says they went through some hard times when Josh was young but she’s so thankful they can be here today to help others.
“Once a year we come here to shed some tears and cleanse our souls and give thanks for allowing us to be here and to take the time to walk. We raise money for future research so that other kids and others, in general, can be a survivor and wear a yellow shirt instead of be in memory of.”
Cancer survivor Teresa Olichny has been doing the relay for 7 years and started before she got her diagnosis. Now cancer-free for two years, she says it means a lot to her to come and be with others who have been through the same thing.
“It was probably the hardest journey that I’ve ever been through in my life and just the support of all the people that are here and all of the people with cancer that are survivors, they really, truly are rocks for us to count on.”
The Relay for Life is a 12-hour event hosted by the Canadian Cancer Society with the money raised going to fund cancer research.
The event will run until 12 a.m. on June 23rd. So far people have raised around half of the event’s $35,000 goal for the year.