LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Relay for Life kicks off in Windsor on Friday night | MyWindsorNow.com

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Relay for Life kicks off in Windsor on Friday night

The American Cancer Society has been an active member in northern Colorado for many years offering services and support to those battling cancer as well as lifesaving cancer information to the community.

Plans are under way for the 2nd Annual Relay for Life of Northern Weld County, held at Eastman Park in Windsor on Friday and Saturday.

Mona Valdez, an ACS Board Member, Relay For Life Volunteer and Cancer Survivor, shares her story of survival and importance of Relay.

“The American Cancer Society Relay for Life is all about Celebrating Cancer Survivors! I am one of those survivors who have fought the tough fight to beat cancer, not once, but, twice!

I was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1990 at the age of 39, and had been cancer free. I had just celebrated my eleventh year when I had a reoccurrence, in 2001, just a few days before my 50th birthday. As a person diagnosed with cancer, sometimes you feel that you are all alone in your battle to be cancer free. Relay brings you together with those who are surviving cancer.

As a survivor, I needed to find a way to help other cancer survivors. So with family, and friends we started our ACS Relay for Life Team, The Fluttering Mariposa’s in 2001. We have raised thousands of dollars for Relay, through fundraisers and donations. I also volunteer as coordinator for ACS Reach to Recovery.

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My first Relay was very emotional, I cried through the whole survivors lap as multitudes of people clapped, whistled and yelled “WAY TO GO!” as we passed by them. Plus seeing all the survivors and being part of them was totally awesome, and humbling.

Relay for Life is emotional, yet it is filled with the joy of life, laughter, and fun for everyone. Relay offers a way for communities to gather in showing support, and raising awareness of how we can beat this disease. At Relay, we Celebrate those who are survivors, we Remember those we have lost to this awful disease, and we Fight Back in finding a cure. Besides, where else can Survivors and Caretakers be recognized for their fight to battle cancer?”

There is still time to register your team on line at northweldrelay.org. If you have any questions about Relay, please call Shannon Velasquez at 970-679-1601 or Mikaela Sandridge at 970-356-9728.

Kristi Benningsdorf


Relay Volunteer

American Cancer Society Board Member