Editorial: Battling cancer with fun

Jun. 19, 2014 @ 11:13 PM

Two things, at least, are going to happen this evening in Raider Stadium on the campus of Southern Vance High School. Be there.

Relay for Life activities will be ongoing, and within them, the survivors’ lap and the lighting of luminaries will stand out for participants in honor of those living and those who have died.

Watching a survivors’ lap is to be overwhelmed with emotion. It is priceless, just as is life. Just listen to the stories coming from the tent with survivors, some diagnosed multiple times.

The survivors have been there, in a doctor’s office, and heard a voice say the word that can shatter many hopes and dreams: cancer. It never gets easier for the physician or the patient.

The reason is we haven’t found a cure. And that’s why Relay tonight is so important, why we need to be there, why we need to bring a dollar or two and get in on the many activities that will be happening.

Whether we need another T-shirt or not doesn’t matter — or another calorie from those fine foods that will be offered. Just come hungry.

When we look at those survivors, and know that part of the reason they’re making the walk around the track is because of donations to finding a cure and raise awareness, don’t blame us if a tear wells up. Just cry with us.

Each luminary creates a more introspective moment, when memories are relived in reflection. The bag and lighting is simple yet so powerful. Not to mention the many signs, some with faces, that are around the track.

We hope everyone made it to Warren and Granville counties with us for their Relay events, and tonight will make it 3-for-3.

Jim Valvano had sage advice for what he called a full day: We need to laugh, we need to think and we need to cry. That’s a full day. He also had it right when he said, “Cancer can take away all my physical abilities. It cannot touch my mind, it cannot touch my heart, and it cannot touch my soul.

“And those three things are going to carry on forever.”

Relay goes for 24 hours. Just pick a time, and come on out.