Camaraderie and family fun

By: By Charles Warner - [email protected]
Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Them Award for 2019. The Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Banner Award for 2019. The Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team with the Best Theme Award for 2019. The Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Campsite Award for 2019. The Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team with the Best Banner Award for 2019. The Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Jonesville Mighty Wildcats Relay for Life Team with the Best Campsite Award for 2019. The Jonesville Might Wildcats Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Beth Lancaster (far right), Chairperson for Union County Relay for Life, presents the Spirit of Relay Award for 2019 to the Over Hill Gang, Red Spot, Founders Federal Credit Union, Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC, Bethel Baptist Church, Union Medical Center, St. Luke Baptist Church, Jonesville Mighty Wildcats, Inman Family & Friends, and Bantam Chef Relay for Life teams. The teams took part in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.

UNION COUNTY — The weather didn’t want to cooperate but that didn’t stop the participants in the annual Union County Relay for Life from doing their part in the fight against cancer.

Relay For Life is the American Cancer Society’s signature event. It started in 1986 in Tacoma Washington when Dr. Gordy Klatt, an Oncologist, wanted to do something for his patients. He was a runner so he took pledges and ran a track for 24 hours to raise money for The American Cancer Society. He ran over 80 miles over the 24-hour period. He did it again, but this time recruited some friends and Relay for Life as it exists today was born. Relay for Life is no longer 24 hours in length and the members of the teams that take part in it walk instead of run.

The Union County Relay For Life started in 1996 and has had 24 events since then, that number growing to 25 this past Friday when the 2019 Relay for Life was held at the Union County Fairgrounds.

Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, said Monday that while the weather forced this year’s Relay for Life indoors, it did not dampen the enthusiasm of participants, but instead helped draw those participating closer together.

“There was a closer fellowship, a lot of camaraderie with the teams assisting one another,” Inman said. “It was a family fun kind of event.”

Union County Relay for Life is a quarter of a century old and Inman said this was reflected in the entertainment by JukeBox 45, a band that he said specializes in playing “the oldies.” He said this was in keeping with the theme of this year’s Relay, “Blast From The Past” and made for a very entertaining evening.

The event began with a ribbon-cutting ceremony that initiated the first lap of the evening, the “Surviors Lap.” The scissors for this year’s ribbon-cutting were presented by a very special celebrity presenter: “Jojo,” a retired member of the Union County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit who is herself a cancer survivor. Jojo presented the scissors to UCSO Sgt. Tommy Cudd, a cancer survivor himself , who cut the ribbon to begin the Surivors Lap. The lap was lead by Cudd, Jojo, and her handler, UCSO Investigator Russell Vinson.

Year-Long Fundraising

During the course of the year leading up to each Relay for Life celebration, teams form and raise money for the America Cancer Society and then gather at the fairgrounds to celebrate life at the event. Over the years Union County Relay For Life has raised over $2 million toward the fight against cancer with all that money going to The American Cancer Society.

Teams Honored

A number of the teams participating in Friday’s event were honored for excelling in the following areas:

• Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team — Newcomer Best Theme Award for 2019

• Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team — Newcomer Best Banner Award for 2019 and Newcomer Best Campsite Award for 2019

• Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team — Best Theme Award for 2019

• Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team — Best Banner Award for 2019

• Jonesville Mighty Wildcats Relay for Life Team — Best Campsite Award for 2019

The following teams received the Spirit of Relay Award for 2019:

• Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team

• Red Spot Relay for Life Team

• Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team

• Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team

• Bethel Baptist Church Relay for Life Team

• Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team

• St. Luke Baptist Church Relay for Life Team

• Jonesville Mighty Wildcats Relay for Life Team

• Inman Family & Friends Relay for Life Team

• Bantam Chef Relay for Life Team

Progress Made

One in three women and one in two men get cancer in their life time. Union County at one time was number one in prostate cancer deaths in South Carolina. Despite them grim statistics, progress has been made because when Relay started in Union County in 1996, only 50 percent of those diagnosed with cancer lived beyond five years. The survival rate today is approximately 80 percent. This is a testament to the improvements in treatments, early detection and education on preventive methods i.e. don’t smoke, cover up to protect from the sun’s rays, diet and exercise, etc.

For more about this year’s Union County Relay for Life see upcoming editions of The Union Times and online at our website (www.uniondailytimes.com) and our Facebook page.

Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Them Award for 2019. The Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/web1_Relay-For-Life-Newcomer-Best-Theme.jpegPhoto courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Them Award for 2019. The Union Medical Center Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.

Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Banner Award for 2019. The Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/web1_Relay-For-Life-Newcomer-Best-Banner.jpegPhoto courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Banner Award for 2019. The Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.

Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team with the Best Theme Award for 2019. The Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/web1_Relay-For-Life-Best-Theme.jpegPhoto courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team with the Best Theme Award for 2019. The Over The Hill Gang Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.

Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Campsite Award for 2019. The Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/web1_Relay-For-Life-Newcomer-Best-Campsite.jpegPhoto courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team with the Newcomer Best Campsite Award for 2019. The Founders Federal Credit Union Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.

Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team with the Best Banner Award for 2019. The Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/web1_Relay-For-Life-Best-Banner.jpegPhoto courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team with the Best Banner Award for 2019. The Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.

Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Jonesville Mighty Wildcats Relay for Life Team with the Best Campsite Award for 2019. The Jonesville Might Wildcats Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/web1_Relay-For-Life-Best-Campsite.jpegPhoto courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Torrance Inman, Experience Leader for Union County Relay for Life, presents members of the Jonesville Mighty Wildcats Relay for Life Team with the Best Campsite Award for 2019. The Jonesville Might Wildcats Relay for Life Team was one of a number of teams that participated in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.

Photo courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Beth Lancaster (far right), Chairperson for Union County Relay for Life, presents the Spirit of Relay Award for 2019 to the Over Hill Gang, Red Spot, Founders Federal Credit Union, Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC, Bethel Baptist Church, Union Medical Center, St. Luke Baptist Church, Jonesville Mighty Wildcats, Inman Family & Friends, and Bantam Chef Relay for Life teams. The teams took part in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/web1_Relay-For-Life-Spirit-Of-Relay.jpegPhoto courtesy of Union County Relay for Life Beth Lancaster (far right), Chairperson for Union County Relay for Life, presents the Spirit of Relay Award for 2019 to the Over Hill Gang, Red Spot, Founders Federal Credit Union, Duncan Acres/Bethel UMC, Bethel Baptist Church, Union Medical Center, St. Luke Baptist Church, Jonesville Mighty Wildcats, Inman Family & Friends, and Bantam Chef Relay for Life teams. The teams took part in Friday’s Relay for Life event at the Union County Fairgrounds.
Relay for Life a success despite weather

By Charles Warner

[email protected]

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.