More than $150k raised so far by Relay for Life

Published 9:21 am Monday, August 12, 2013

Freeborn County residents raised more than $151,000 through the end of the annual Freeborn County Relay for Life on Saturday morning.

Organizers have until the end of August to collect donations toward this year’s total, said Co-Chairwoman Vicki Manges. The goal is $193,000.

Manges said this weekend’s relay honored 628 cancer survivors, which was up from about 580 the previous year. Volunteers placed about 4,000 luminaries around a track in honor or memory of people who have battled cancer.

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“Cancer touches so many people and to know that you are hopefully making a difference means a lot,” Manges said.

The relay is the American Cancer Society’s signature local event that aims to draw survivors and the community together to raise awareness about cancer and support for research. Money raised goes to support cancer research, clinical trials, a call center for cancer patients, a visitation program for breast cancer patients and free lodging for patients undergoing treatment.

Though she is not a cancer survivor herself, she said she has felt the effects of cancer through diagnoses of her brother-in-law, father and grandmother.

She noted she is grateful for all of the relay committee members and volunteers who have helped make the event possible.

“I’ve had a great committee to work with,” Manges said.

After five years as co-chairwoman, she said she and Co-Chairwoman Darla Schnaith are stepping down from the position for next year’s relay.