Relay raises bar to #036;203,000 in #039;03

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 16, 2003

Each year, the Pike County Relay for Life board of directors sets the fundraising goal a little bit higher. Each year, Pike Countians respond.

Not one of the team captains at Thursday night's 2003

kickoff meeting raised an eyebrow when Mary Gibson, Relay chairperson, announced the goal for 2003 - "two hundred and three thousand dollars."

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Instead the team captains applauded.

"We are ready to make Relay

successful again," Gibson told the captains. "Relay is not about cancer. It's about (the person) who hears the words, 'Your biopsy has come back malignant.' It's about the husband, the wife, the child, the parents.

"It's about the friends who loved and prayed for that person. It's about those who felt the need to volunteer to do what they can so that none of their loved ones will ever have to hear those words.

"Relay for Life is about caring and loving and doing everything possible to eradicate cancer."

On May 16, 2003 the people of Pike County will come together for the Relay for Life event.

"And we will come together in a force of love," Gibson said.

The Relay chairperson expressed appreciation to all of those who worked so diligently last year to reach and surpass the lofty goal of $175,000 and earned Pike County the third spot in the Top 10 Nationwide Communities in per capita giving.

Board member Williams said she was in a restaurant recently and saw 'enthusiasm soup' on the menu. She asked the chef about the unusual soup.

"He told me he took a big pot and put everything he had into it," Williams said. "That's what

we are asking you to do. Go back to your teams and put everything you have into making Relay 2003 a success."

The meeting ended with the lighting of liminaria by the team captains.

Gibson told the captains "The hero lies in you" and prayerfully asked, "Bless our efforts as we earn money to fight cancer."

Relay for Life 2003 is just getting under way. Teams and individuals all across the county are encouraged to join the fight against cancer.

Those who are not on a team, are encouraged to join a team, organize a team or work as individuals to help make the year 2003

a 203-thousand-dollar year and perhaps the year a cure is found for cancer.