49th LRS personnel walk against cancer

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman DeAndre Curtiss
  • 49th Wing Public Affairs
The concept of one team, one fight is one that U.S. Air Force personnel have learned to embrace. That concept was on full display as 57 service members, families and civilians representing the 49th Logistics Readiness Squadron rallied together to participate in the 2012 Relay for Life cancer walk at Briggs Field in Alamogordo, N.M.

The Relay for Life is an annual event that is part of the American Cancer Society's program to raise money for cancer research. The idea behind the 24-hour walk is to help raise money, while time bringing awareness to the disease and how it affects people.

"My venture with the Otero County Relay for Life began in 2010 while volunteering at the Alamogordo Cancer Resource Center," said Jana Gaddess, "One Team...One Fight!" team co-captain. "I participate, fundraise, and seek support for the Otero County Relay for Life because I have seen firsthand the amazing support and exceptional services that are offered at the resource center."

The "One Team...One Fight!" group consists of three separate relay teams with 57 49th LRS members. The goal of the team was to raise $10,000 by holding multiple fundraising events. Each member of the team also signed up to walk one-hour shifts with several members walking two or three additional shifts.

"Relay for Life has been my passion for the last three years, and the way I choose to help cancer victims is by being fully active in this event," said Master Sgt. Felicia Hamilton, 49th LRS NCO in charge of quality insurance. "I am blessed to have the opportunity to volunteer at the Cancer Resource Center to offer support and comfort to those battling cancer in our community. I will participate in the Relay for Life each year until we find a cure."

This year's opening ceremony started at 5:00 p.m., and was followed by the cancer survivors walk, which consisted of a lap around the track by all the present cancer survivors. The 24-hour event had multiple events woven into schedule, as well as entertainment. The line-up included live performances, dancing, and popular music from a local DJ. There were also volunteer vendors selling food, snacks and beverages, with all proceeds going to cancer research.

"One Team...One Fight!" was comprised of mostly military personnel in good health but several of them have been directly impacted by cancer. During the event, Senior Airman Cooper Jasper, a member of the 49th LRS team, talked about her reasons for participating in the event.

"This event means a lot to me because cancer has affected me through my dad who has brain cancer," said Jasper. "When I found out he had cancer, I rushed home to be there for his surgery. I don't get to see him as often because of my military responsibilities, so whenever I can support I will."

The personnel of "One Team...One Fight!" sacrificed their time and energy in support of the battle against cancer, truly putting service before self. For information on Relay for Life, visit www.relayforlife.org.