Determined to raise awareness for cancer, Dr. Gordy Klatt spent 24 hours running a track in Tacoma, Washington in May 1985. He raised more than $27,000 for his local cancer charity.
He had no idea what his fundraiser would lead to–Relay for Life, the world’s largest fundraising event for cancer. More than four million people in 20 different countries participate in the event to help raise money for the brutal fight millions endure each day–even people we know personally. One of these people was, Mike Beard, father of Woodland students Brooke and Kasey Beard who lost his life to cancer in 2011.
Brooke now finds herself captain of her very own team, Angels Fluttering Above. She has past experience with the fundraising association, but decided to put her own team together in 2016.
“Our first team was called Frisbee Flyers, and our second team was in 2013 to 2015, which was the Grand Slammers, both run by my cousin” said Beard “I then started my own team in 2016, Angels Fluttering Above.”
Her team puts together fundraisers throughout the year, to raise money for the Relay for Life walk event in June.
“We raise money for the team through the American Cancer Society by doing many fundraisers” Beard explained, “Some fundraisers we do are pail shakes outside of grocery stores, bake sales, bowling, paint nights, vendor fairs, donations, chance baskets and many more.”
Her team has had many accomplishments since only being established in 2016. Over the past three years, Beard’s team has risen approximately $30,000 to benefit the American Cancer Society. Her team has also won a few trophies at the walk event, two for raising the highest amount of money for a small team and one for the Road to Recovery lap.
Her favorite part of being on a relay team, is the actual event. After prior fundraising, many teams come together to walk the track for the day long event and compete in different activities. “One of my favorite things about Relay is the walk on the day of the event, which this year is June 8th.” Beard said, “The day of the event is my favorite part because I get to spend time with people that have went through the same thing I have.”
Beard’s dedication to Relay for Life, has landed her a spot on the Relay for Life of Greater Waterbury’s planning comittee.
In the future, Beard plans to raise as much money as she can to help find a cure to cancer. She also plans on using this opportunity to use the Angels Fluttering Above team as her senior project, and then pass it down to her younger sister.