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Cancer survivors honored

With the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life in Butler County only a few short days away, local cancer survivors and their caregivers were celebrated and honored last Friday at the annual Survivors’ Luncheon. Dozens turned out at the First United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall to enjoy a light luncheon of chicken salad, pimiento cheese, crackers, fresh fruit and pecan pie provided by Priester’s Pecans. Healthy Circle of the Regional Medical Center played host to the event, with RFL event coordinator Gerri McGinnis serving as emcee.

“We have wonderful teams and a great team of coordinators in place for our event this year, and we are proud to announce our sponsorships are already at $25,000, which is just great,” McGinnis said. “Remember that much of the money raised by Relay goes to research, and a lot of that research is being done right here in Alabama at UAB. Our donations make a difference, and I dearly hope that one day there will be no need to hold Relay.”

Noted local talent April Lowery provided musical inspiration with two songs, including a soulful rendition of the classic hymn, “Amazing Grace” while attendees enjoyed their meal. McGinnis also recognized each cancer survivor present and had them share the type of cancer(s) they had battled and their period of survival — ranging from a few weeks since their initial diagnosis to almost 40 years of extra birthdays.

A number of local businesses and individuals donated door prizes given out to those with the winning numbers, while Butler County Sheriff Danny Bond was on hand to distribute special parking passes to all survivors to use on the night of Relay.

“Our Butler County Sheriff’s Posse has also graciously agreed to come out and help the BCSO with parking that night, so we are expecting everything to go very smoothly,” said Bond.

“We will have our own special tent for our survivors once again, and we will be providing grilled chicken for your supper and ask you to bring those side dishes as usual,” McGinnis said. “We also have a ton of great door prizes to give away, so y’all be sure to come out and join us—and don’t forget to pick your survivor T-shirts before you leave today.”

Butler County RFL for the ACS is slated for this Saturday, May 4, from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Butler County Fairgrounds.