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Xavier helps fight cancer with Relay For Life

By Rebeca Bayens
On April 19, 2012

Xavier's annual Relay For Life starts this Friday, April 20 at 3 p.m. and runs until Saturday, April 21 at 9 a.m. This year's

theme is Superheroes: Finding Cancer's Kryptonite.

Junior Aimee Rich, the Relay event recruitment chair, said that this theme is good because it's an "event that allows participants to fight back against cancer and be someone's hero. We also celebrate survivors at Relay who fought or are fighting one of the worst diseases in the world." According to a Xavier news release, Relay For Life was started in 1985 as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. The event has spread across the nation and has become one of the biggest sources of funds for the organization. This is Xavier's 10th Relay For Life event.

Teams will walk a track from the Xavier Yard to the Gallagher Student Center. The goal is to raise $32,000, have 238 participants and 35 teams. "Right now," Rich said, "the group has raised $13,114 and there are 40 teams made up of 281 participants." Rich said that her experience with

cancer survivors caused her to become more involved with Relay on Xavier's campus. She has an aunt who survived

colon cancer and a high school friend who survived leukemia. Additionally, Rich had her own personal scare with cancer this year. "Having gone through all the emotions

and tests...waiting for a diagnosis has changed my perspective on the world and made me more dedicated than ever to Relay," she said. This year's Relay group won the Rival U competition, which, according to the Relay For Life website, pitted colleges against each other in weekly competitions in order to win prizes. Rich said that this victory has enabled this year's event to have a VIP tent from 3-5 p.m on Friday for faculty and staff to come receive giveaways for supporting Relay. Other attractions include an

inflatable slide. Other events include the silent auction from 3-7 p.m and the Luminaria Ceremony at 9 p.m. which

honors those who have been affected by cancer.

"I am passionate about fighting back and not stopping until a cure is found," Rich said. "I am passionate about making sure one day cancer doesn't exist and the word 'survivor'

always follows the word 'cancer.'" This event is open to the public. To learn more about Relay For Life, go to www.relayforlife.org/xu, like the Relay for Life at Xavier University Facebook page, or follow the group on Twitter at @XURelayforlife.


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