Relay for Life brings cancer survivors together

Professor Paul Clark (pictured) suspects that like himself, most men think they are bullet proof.

But Southern Cross Universitys Vice-Chancellor realised what a very tenuous grasp on life we all have when he was diagnosed with cancer last year.

It came as quite a shock really. I have always considered myself fit and healthy, he said. There were no symptoms of any kind to indicate anything was amiss.

Professor Clark has since had surgery and now has a clean bill of health, but he warns men not to be complacent and to get regular health check-ups as early detection is a vital part of survival.

Professor Clark now has the honour of starting the Lismore Relay for Life cancer fundraiser this Saturday, November 4, at the Lismore rugby fields in Brunswick Street (behind Trinity Catholic College). The relay opens at 4pm and runs continuously until the closing ceremony on Sunday at 10am.

Relay for Life is a festive team event which raises funds for cancer research.

Southern Cross University staffers Kath Mitchelson and Peter Brown, both survivors of cancer, decided to field a university fundraising team for the first time this year. Kath has survived bowel cancer and Peter has twice survived melanoma.

People often dont know what to do when they hear someone has cancer. This is a simple and direct way of showing support to cancer sufferers and their families, Kath said. Cancer is something that is touching us all with increasing frequency. So it is good to get cancer out of the closet and for people to be more open and to start talking about it more and share their experiences. We can all learn a great deal from each others experiences.

Lismore Relay for Life organisers are inviting cancer survivors, family and friends to come down over the weekend and throw their support behind the event.

There is an opening ceremony at 4pm on Saturday, followed by a Survivors Walk at 4.30pm where cancer survivors and their carers walk the first lap of the relay and enjoy a special afternoon tea. At dusk there is the Hope Ceremony a time to remember and light a candle for those that have been lost to cancer.

During the event there with be performances by local musicians, entertainment for the kids with Prime Possum and other characters, a ball throwing competition organised by the Titans football team, crazy hat competitions, trivia competitions and much more.

Food and drinks will also be available.

For more information phone the Cancer Council on 6681 1933.

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