Letter: Cancer relay deserves more Berkshire support

Cancer relay deserves more county support

To the editor:

On a very cold and windy evening on Jan. 19, more than 60 people gathered at the Luau Hale in Lenox for the 2016 Kick Off of Relay For Life of Berkshire County Central South. Those in attendance came to hear what this years leadership team has planned for the annual event, which will be held on June 24 and 25 at Monument Mountain Regional High School.

We were honored to have in attendance our state Representative, Smitty Pignatelli, who not only came to support our efforts, but shared his personal story of how cancer had affected his family. Smitty talked about how the early detection of many cancers today are saving lives. We all are touched by cancer in some way or another. Cancer doesn't care if you are a celebrity, sports hero or a store clerk. None of us are immune to this deadly disease.

This year will mark the 21st Relay event to be held in the Berkshires but there is no disputing the fact that attendance has been in decline over the past few years. Many blame the move three years ago from Pittsfield's Onota Lake to the current Great Barrington location. While it is understandable that the move may have disappointed some, it is hard to understand why they Relayed in the first place.

Relay For Life celebrates our cancer survivors and remembers those that have lost their battle. Donations are raised for treatments, rides, and research to name just a few of the benefits. We have a new leadership team in 2016 made up of volunteers that are working incredibly hard to make a difference.

This year's Relay will be jam-packed with live music, food and meaningful ceremonies. I ask that you once again remember why you participated in the past and help us make a difference in someone's life.

Ray Gardino, Lee The writer is co-leader of the Relay For Life of Berkshire County, Central South.


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