Relay for life

A few Leesville students view the display of Relay for Life posters in the main lobby. They consider participating in the relay this June. (Photo Courtesy Hannah Comesky)


On Friday, June 9 members from and outside of the Leesville community will join together to participate in the Relay for Life, Leesville’s annual walkathon to support the research and development of treatment for cancer. The event has been held at Leesville since 2010 on the track from 6pm at night until 7am the following morning.

Forming a team is as simple as registering online, coming up with a team name, setting a fundraising goal that you hope to reach, and recruiting friends and family to join your team.

To kick off the event, an opening ceremony welcomes all those participating in the relay. The first lap of the relay is the “Survivor Lap”, commemorating survivors and men/women who are currently fighting cancer. The next lap is the “Caregiver Lap” which recognizes those who have supported their loved ones during cancer treatment.

After these two memorial laps, the teams join in on the celebration by walking laps around the track. As the night goes on, teammates take turns walking laps to symbolize the ongoing fight against cancer. While not walking, participants can visit various booths to play games and do different activities.

Participants that have lost a loved one to cancer feel a personal connection to the relay for it’s success in raising money for the American Cancer Society.

“I decided to participate in the relay for life because when I was very little my grandfather and grandmother both passed away from cancer. I know that by doing the relay for life I am helping others and spreading awareness about this disease,” said Mikaela Deininger via text message, rising Leesville freshman who created a team and participated in the walk last year.

To honor those who have passed away from cancer and those who are still struggling through the battle, luminarias are lit after sunset.

Last year with 30 teams participating, the relay was able to raise about $65,000 towards the research and development of cancer treatment. This year the relay hopes to surpass that with a goal of $70,000.

Help the Relay for Life reach their goal this year by coming out to participate in the event. For more information, visit


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