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#036;160,000 raised for Relay for Life

News Editor

Unbelievable.

That’s the only word Pike County Relay for Life Chairperson Nedetria Talbot could say after announcing that Pike County had raised $160,000 in the fight against cancer.

After a long day and night of walking, lighting luminaries, entertainment, singing, dancing and a womanless beauty pageant, the Relay for Life Event came to a close with an awards ceremony second to none.

"I haven’t looked at the total," Talbot said, standing on the Relay stage with the total amount of money raised in hand. "I saw a total at bank night but I have no idea what the total is now. But whatever is on this piece of paper was made possible by you."

Talbot said she worried all year that this year’s Relay couldn’t compete with last year and 1999’s goal just could not be topped, but because of the hard work and fundraising of all the teams the 2000 goal of $125,000 was exceeded by $35,000.

"How do you talk about something as wonderful as this," Talbot said. "There are not words for what happened here tonight and what had been happening all over Pike County since we kicked off the 2000 Relay for Life. We raised $160,000 to help fight and find a cure for cancer. It is unbelievable."

But Talbot said the night’s total was not all.

"We have more money to add to it," Talbot said. "I know we have at least $5,000 and some teams still have not collected all of their money. The $160,000 is just the money we have on hand tonight."

During the awards ceremony, Talbot gave credit where credit was due, thanking the Pike County American Cancer Society Board of Director, every team and each person that made a donation to Relay for Life. She said it didn’t matter how big or how small the donation because every penny helped exceed the goal and assist in research for finding a cure for cancer.

"We raised a lot of money," she said. "Eventually someone’s dollar will find a cure and with the money raised by Pike County we may have helped find a cure for cancer tonight."

Talbot also said she was pleased at the participation of the entire community and the turnout at the Relay for Life event.

"This year’s Relay for Life unified the whole community," she said. "There were teams from all over Troy, Brundidge, Goshen and Banks. Because of the whole community working together we were able to meet and exceed the goal. It says a lot for Pike County.

"A lot of people stayed late tonight for the awards ceremony because they really wanted to know what the total was and they stayed here until it was announced to see how much money was raised."

Above all else, Talbot said she thanks God for guiding her, the Pike County ACS Board, teams and those who donated to the cause. In her Relay for Life notebook, she keeps a list of quotes that remind her of the people who worked so hard to make Relay for Life a success. One of her favorites is by Frank Gaines, "Only he who can see the invisible can do the impossible."

"God has blessed each person that has put time and effort into helping fight this disease and find a cure," she said. "I have been so blessed and I am so privileged to have had the opportunity to work with everyone in this great cause. I wish everyone God’s richest blessings. I am so glad to have been able to work with a group of people who truly see the invisible and work to do the impossible. Together we are making a difference in the war against cancer."

Just because the Relay for Life event is over, the stage has been removed and the tents and decorations have been taken down, the work is not done for the Pike County ACS Board.

"Next week the board will meet and go over this year’s Relay for life," Talbot said. "We’ll discuss what went well and what we need to improve on for next year, and then we’ll start all over. The fight against cancer never stops."