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Relay for Life raises $67,000 to fight cancer

June 09, 1999

The American Cancer Society raised about $67,000 in its fourth annual Relay for Life at School Stadium at South Hagerstown High School.

About 500 people participated in the relay, which began at 3 p.m. Friday and ended at 3 p.m. Saturday.

This year's pledges were $17,000 more than the amount pledged last year, according to June Datum, administrative assistant at the Hagerstown office.

Participants were divided into 30 teams of from eight to 15 people. Each team collected donations for taking part in the 24-hour relay. One person from each team was on the track at all times.

The relay was preceded by a luminaire ceremony, in which the track was lined with about 1,000 candles to honor cancer patients, Datum said.

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About 70 cancer survivors were on hand to begin the first lap of the relay.

American Cancer Society volunteer Janice Tucker was chairwoman of this year's event.

There were 274 deaths from cancer in Washington County in 1997, according to the 1997 Maryland Vital Statistics Report.

The money raised in this year's Relay for Life will be used "for patient services and cancer research," Datum said. "A portion of that money comes back into the community to help local cancer patients."

"This event is not possible without the caring people and businesses in our community," she said.

- Erin Heath

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