Stay- Awake-A-Thon provides support Provides a place for cancer survivors and their caregivers to meet others in their community who are experiencing the same concerns, questions, trauma, fears, joy, relief, and, yes, sometimes guilt -- the rollercoaster of emotions that cancer inflicts.
You choose your level of involvement Cancer survivors and their caregivers are welcome guests at this event. Many of our team members are survivors and caregivers, but if you are new to this, you are welcome to come and just watch. All survivors and caregivers present will be invited to join the special laps just for them, but there is no pressure to participate.
The Survivors' Lap/march is when survivors join together to take one lap around the dome or designated area, officially kicking off the event. They wear a special T-shirt, or sash. Some survivors are years past treatment and some may be just days past their diagnosis. Some walk unaided, some are pushed in wheelchairs.
"As I slowly walk my Survivor Lap with my husband by my side and my father walking beside my Mom, I take it all in. I don’t think about the struggle that got me here – I think about the possibilities. I think about the new friends I have made here, the ones that I will chat with, as I walk into the late hours of the night... I read as many of the luminarias as I can and wonder if they are here walking among us or if they are smiling down at us and I feel a sense of encouragement to continue the forward momentum to find a cure. I watch in admiration those who walk in the Caregiver Lap. I know that without the support of our loved ones and friends many of us may have simply given up. On behalf of cancer survivors, I say 'Thank you.'" -Heather Corbett, MA
"It was such a bittersweet moment to watch dad walk the Survivors' Lap - exhausted and bald from the latest chemo treatment, yet he was able to do it on his own. I can't express the emotions I feel when I think of it. Walking the Survivor and Caretaker lap with him, my Mom, my brother, and my son, was one of the hardest yet most gratifying things I've ever done.I couldn't be more proud of my family than I am now, and after this event I not only feel that my family pulled together to help fight this, but also the town. What more could we ask? -Sandy Bouchard Crowe, Plainville, CT
"As I made my way around the track, tears streaming down my face, the crowd cheered. Arm-in-arm, total strangers and I walked together to celebrate life...to walk in victory having won the battle over cancer. Total strangers brought together by the common bond that cancer forms...speaking without words...understanding without being told...knowing the value of the precious gift of life. What a night!" -Dr. Reba Hoffman, Florida