A rainy evening might have dampened the booths, clothing and material things of those attending this year’s Claiborne County Relay For Life, but it didn’t dampen the spirits of those who were there Friday.
The annual event, held at Harrogate City Park, brings people of all ages together for one reason: To raise money to help find a cure for cancer.
As many at the event say, cancer affects almost everyone in some way. Hundreds of people show their support during the annual event by being on a team, participating in the entertainment and purchasing items from the teams who are raising money.
“Claiborne County Relay for Life is one of the most rewarding experience that I have ever been a part of,” said Amy Earl, who co-chaired the event this year along with Meagan England.
Several local schools and churches provided entertainment during the evening, which was kicked off by the MCM Youth Choir, Jenna Vannoy singing the National Anthem and Jaymin Huddleston leading in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Cancer survivor Kathy Hopkins gave the survivor’s speech, and spoke of her winning battle while her husband lost his battle with the disease.
Bo Williams, news anchor with WATE-TV in Knoxville, has been an annual participant in the event for several years, calling out the names of cancer survivors who are at the medal ceremony. One by one, they are presented with a medal that commemorates their fight against the dreaded disease.
Many are veterans of the ceremony while some are participating for their first year. Cancer affects people of all ages — and people of all ages participate in the ceremony. “Cancer doesn’t discriminate,” one person said.
“I would like to take time to thank everyone who takes part in it,” Earl said. “Without the survivors, caregivers, sponsors and participants, our events wouldn’t be possible.”
“I am so proud of our county and all the funds that we raise to help the American Cancer Society end cancer.”
Reach Marisa Anders at 423-254-5588 or on Twitter @newsgirl88.