Bath Relay for Life offers modified format

On Saturday, September 24th survivors, caregivers, and family members of cancer patients will gather in the afternoon in the Upper Parking Lot at Bath Community Hospital. They will offer support and recognition to each other, and possibly raise some money too. Kara Major of Bath Community Hospital described how this event is coming together.

“This year the Relay for Life will be held at Bath Community Hospital. This is the first year that it will be at the hospital. And the hospital has been very supportive of the Relay for Life for many years, but this year the hospital stepped up and volunteered their space, because until July, we weren’t really certain that there was going to be a relay.”

***Organizers want walkers, and team members to feel uplifted, not taxed by the commitment to be a part of Relay. This year some simplifying may keep the event fun and productive for everyone involved.

Again Kara Major,

“Many people are used to the relay starting early in the day, in the morning, and this year it will be a little bit different. It will start at 4pm, and run until 9pm, and we’re hoping that the shorter event will engage more participants as well.”

***Pat Foutz, Vice President for Quality and Human Resources, also emphasized the importance of those facing cancer knowing they are not alone.   Pat, a veteran volunteer, and a small, dedicated committee are planning for a beautiful fall afternoon.

“Even though it was July when we decided to this I want people to understand that this event is for the survivors. It’s for the battle that they fought this past year. And we recognize that, and we couldn’t go a year without recognizing what our fellow community people are going through, what our coworkers are going through, and our family members are going through. And we just want them to know that we want to fight this fight with them.”

***Survivors are celebrated at a special dinner held at Millboro Elementary School a couple of weeks before the Relay.

“It is September the 11th. Tina Glenn is in charge of that. Her heart is the survivors, and this dinner is going to be held at Millboro.”

***Also, Tickets for Basket Alley, which is a very deluxe raffle of a huge variety of items can be purchased in the lobby of the BB&T bank in Hot Springs. The recently opened Community Bistro in the hospital donated a potion of the proceeds from all meals sold in a day to Relay for Life. And, as for what we can expect on the actual day, Saturday, September 24th?

Again Pat Foutz,

“We’re going to have some of the same events because they seem to be so popular. And that’s ‘minute to win-it’, and everyone enjoys that. We’re going to have some entertainment. We’re going to have a surprise singer, and then we’re going to have Erin Roberts do the National Anthem.”

Finally, I asked Pat where funds raised through Relay for Life go.

“The one thing I want the community to know is that we have people walking beside you, having dinner next to you that are on a drug that was patented due to a grant that the ACS, American Cancer Society had, and had hired a scientist. And it’s tamoxifen. And that hits millions of people, millions of ladies. It gives them more birthdays; it gives them time to see their children graduate, see them get married, see them have their first grandchild. It is great that we have local funds too, to help with some monies that the American Cancer society is unable to provide, or to give in a large quantity, but when I put my money towards something, I want to get a big return, and know that my best friend is living because of tamoxifen.”


Story By

Bonnie Ralston

Bonnie Ralston is the Assistant Station Coordinator at WVLS and a Highland County news reporter. She began volunteering at Allegheny Mountain Radio in the fall of 2005. In 2006 she became an AMR employee and worked in Bath County for eight years as the WCHG Station Coordinator and then as the news reporter there. She began working in radio while in college and has stayed connected to radio, in one way or another, for more than thirty years. She grew up in Staunton, Virginia, while spending a lot of time on her family’s farm in Deerfield, Virginia. She enjoys spending time outside, watching old TV shows and movies and tending to her chickens.

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