Over $23,000 has been raised so far at Vanderhoof’s sixth annual IDIDALAP at Nechako Valley Secondary’s track on June 17.
About 1,200 students and community members in total participated and completed laps from 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. for this year’s event to raise funds for the Canadian Cancer Society.
Lighting paper lamps at 11 p.m., cancer survivors, families, firefighters, and supporters from the community walked with candles at Nechako Valley Secondary’s track for the last hour of the sixth annual IDIDALAP for CANCER.
This year, seven participating cancer survivors wore commemorative labels named “Sue”, in memory of Sue Hooper, a founding member of the committee that died from cancer earlier this year. The committee also lost Karen Leslie, another founding member, last year.
Dragonflies are a special symbol for the committee, as their extra wings allow angels to land and ride on their back — according to legend, explained Heather Ferris from the organizing committee.
“While I was recovering from chemotherapy, I used to sit in a lawn chair and there would be dragonflies hovering on my arm,” Ferris recounted.
For Leslie McAvity, who has been cancer free for 25 years after a bone marrow transplant, cancer research has progressed far over the years.
“Now my doctor tells me that we just need to take a pill if I get it again,” she said. “But I won’t!”
Participating teams are continuing to collect pledge money, and the committee seeks new volunteers, members, and ideas for community support next year.