Relay for Life offers hope for patients, families

From left, Jan, Bradley, Ian and Lance MacLaughlin carry the banner on the first lap for cancer survivors Friday at the 16th annual Cole County Relay for Life held at the Jefferson City Jaycees Cole County Fairgrounds.

From left, Jan, Bradley, Ian and Lance MacLaughlin carry the banner on the first lap for cancer survivors Friday at the 16th annual Cole County Relay for Life held at the Jefferson City Jaycees Cole County Fairgrounds.

“I am hope.” The message was simple, and visible on the backs of hundreds of purple survivor shirts and was repeated throughout the opening ceremony for the 16th annual Relay for Life, which began 6 p.m. Friday.

“We are here to celebrate and honor our survivors as we gather to remember those we have lost and gather again in hope against cancer, in the hope that we all share,” said Chris Lindsey, co-chair of Relay for Life 2012. “There is hope all the way through the journey. Hope the doctors are wrong, hope that the treatment works and hope that the cancer does not come back.”

More than 130 teams took part in the 12-hour event that, chair Roy Tu’ua said, mimicked in part a cancer patient’s journey.

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