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The Voice of the Black Community

Opinion

Racing Against Cancer: An introduction
Initiative urges awareness, involvement
 
Published Wednesday, March 1, 2017 5:56 pm
by Ashley Mahoney

Cancer.


The metaphor. The disease. The word. It’s nothing and everything to many.

On Dec. 22, 2016, it went from nothing to everything for my family. My dad called and said a sentence I’ll never forget: “According to the paperwork in my hand, your mom’s body is filled with cancer.” How could that be? How could my ridiculously healthy mother have the C-word?

Since that phone call, I’ve asked myself how many other people were diagnosed at that same moment? How many really knew what the word meant? Every situation provides a unique set of challenges. A rollercoaster, as my dad likes to call it. I’m not a doctor, nor am I on the shortlist to become the next millionaire under 25.

Finding a cure and donating large sums of money—they aren’t in my wheelhouse. Yet, as a journalist, it’s feasible to interview doctors, therapists, members of faith organizations, cancer survivors and their families. Their stories, wisdom and knowledge can make a difference. That’s where Racing Against Cancer comes in—a series of articles in The Post which will address the physical, financial, emotional, spiritual and psychological components of cancer as they relate to patients and caregivers.

On a personal note, the racing aspect offers a goal and a time frame. The goal—raise awareness about cancer, while providing support and information for all who come in contact with this historic publication. The time frame, which goes through Nov. 11 at the Charlotte Marathon, which I will run on behalf of The Post, as well as those impacted by cancer. 

Over the next several months, you will see a lot of “Racing Against Cancer: Pray for a cure. Race against cancer.” There’ll be opportunities to participate in whatever capacity you choose. You can run the marathon, half-marathon or 5K, but we concede running is not for everyone. We encourage you to donate your time. Volunteer with local organizations, races or whatever your schedule allows.

Finally, we ask you to reach into your wallet, and donate to the initiative. The fundraising component runs now through Dec. 1. All proceeds will benefit the American Cancer Society.

Perhaps you’ve read this thinking, this has nothing to do with you. You don’t have cancer. No one in your family has ever had cancer. That may be true, but even if you have never been touched by the disease, there’s a good chance that you know someone who has been—even if they have suffered in silence.

We've set up a Go Fund Me page for donors to contribute directly to the American Cancer Society:

https://www.gofundme.com/racing-against-cancer

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