Craig Relay For Life looks to raise $30K

If you go

• What: Fourth annual Craig Relay for Life

• When:

Friday:

— 4 p.m. Registration

— 6 p.m. Opening ceremony

— 6:30 p.m. Survivor lap

— 7 p.m. Team laps begin

— 9:45 p.m. Luminaria ceremony

Saturday:

— 5 a.m. Reveille

— 7 a.m. Final team laps

— 7:30 a.m. Closing ceremony

• Where: Moffat County High School track, 900 Finley Lane.

For more information or to donate, visit www.craigrelayfor...>

In January, Craig resident Bev Rubley lost her brother, Roger Snyder, after a five-year battle with colon cancer.

She will hit the Moffat County High School track in his memory today and Saturday with Team Birthday 365 as part of the Craig Relay for Life.

Rubley, a skin cancer survivor, will also be walking the track all night for her 5-year-old niece, who is currently fighting leukemia, she said.

“I want to find a cure so that no one has to go through the losses that people experience,” she said.

Rubley will be one of about 155 Craig residents participating in the event, which is one of about 5,000 relays nationwide and the fourth in Craig.

Event chairwoman Shannon Samuelson said 18 teams have signed up for the relay.

Samuelson is hoping the event will raise about $30,000 for the American Cancer Society. She said teams have raised about $22,000 as of Thursday.

The idea behind the race is that teams will walk around the track for about 13 hours beginning tonight. Teams are required to have at least one member on the track at all times.

Team registration begins at 4 p.m. and survivor registration begins at 5 p.m.

Opening ceremonies, including a prayer from the Rev. Bob Woods and a survivor speech from Joel Sheridan, begin at 6 p.m.

Participants will start walking the track about 7 p.m., after survivors walk a lap.

A survivor reception and dinner, presentation of the teams and team photos will take place around the same time, Samuelson said.

The luminaria ceremony will start at dark.

Participants will walk through the night until the final team lap at 7 a.m. Saturday. A yoga lesson with Carrie Booth will take place about 5:30 a.m.

Woods will give a sunrise service before closing ceremonies at 7:30 a.m.

During the closing ceremonies, awards will be given out to participants and the amount of money raised for the American Cancer Society will be announced.

For Craig resident Ken Prescott, the relay will be the 55th he has participated in, he said.

Prescott said he participates in five to seven relays on the Western Slope each year.

“Cancer never sleeps and, for one night, neither do we,” he said.

There are three elements all relays have in common — to celebrate, remember and fight back, Prescott said.

The event celebrates those survivors who have beaten cancer at its beginning, Prescott said.

During the luminaria ceremony, those with cancer and “those who have lost the battle to cancer” will be remembered, he said.

As the morning approaches, Prescott said, “that is when we rededicate ourselves to fighting back against this killer.”

Prescott said another reason the relay starts at night is because it mirrors a cancer patient’s life.

“When you first hear the words, ‘you’ve got cancer,’ its like dusk coming on,” he said. “As you are going through treatment, it’s some of the darkest times of your life.

“As you are coming toward the end of treatment, you are beginning to see light at the end of a tunnel, or the dawning of a new day.”

In addition to walking for the people she knows that have been affected by cancer, Rubley wants to raise awareness of cancer more than anything, she said.

“We have a lot more people in Moffat County with cancer than people have any idea,” she said.

Rubley contends there was a time when you simply heard about someone with cancer.

“Now everybody has an aunt, an uncle, a close family member, a sibling, a parent, (affected by cancer),” she said. “It’s up close and personal now with everybody. It’s not just somebody they knew or heard of that had cancer.”

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