Relay for Life kicks off

Published 3:53 pm Wednesday, February 18, 2004

By By Arthur McLean Managing Editor
The Relay for Life officially kicked off in Atmore Monday night at David's Catfish House.
The meeting hosted about 40 team representatives from different Relay teams from around Atmore and the surrounding area.
This year's goal is to raise $79,160 by the June 11, relay scheduled to begin at Tom Byrne Park in Atmore.
This year's theme will be "tuning out cancer."
Melanie Hendrix, a cancer survivor, spoke to the group about her experience fighting the disease.
Thanks to the efforts of the American Cancer Society and event like Relay for Life, she had a place to stay in Birmingham during her treatments.
Called Hope Lodge, Hendrix was able to stay overnight when she was forced to travel to Birmingham for her chemotherapy treatments. The lodge is provided by the American Cancer Society to those undergoing treatment and who live far away from the hospital.
Hendrix said the lodge was a welcoming and comforting place to stay, as opposed to having to rent a hotel room.
"Some people say the money for Relay doesn't stay in Atmore," said Edie Jackson, the event's Atmore coordinator. "Melanie and others from Atmore are a good example of how that money does come back."
Hendrix broke into tears while describing the support she received. "It was nothing to get 5 to 10 letters a day," she said. "It meant so much to know that people here cared."
Team captain meetings will be held the first Thursday of every month at the Community Cup.
For more information on how you can become involved in this community-wide event, call 368-9136, extension 2231.
Jackson also thanked the Faircloths, the owners of David's Catfish House.

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