Residents walk for cancer treatment

Thomas Garcia

Dozens of Quay County residents began to gather at Rattlers Stadium Friday night to take part in the American Cancer Society’s 2009 Relay For Life.

“Our main goal is to raise money for the treatment of Quay County residents fighting cancer,” said Amy Sandoval, Chair Quay County’s Relay for Life. “All of the money raised here tonight stays in Quay County.”

Seventeen teams are paticipating made up of Quay County cancer survivors, families of survivors and those walking to honor loved ones they have lost to the disease.

“There are 13 people on our team,” said Candie Romero. “We are walking in memory of my uncle, Wilfred Gutierrez, who passed away last year from cancer.”

In 2008, the relay brought in $6,000 with seven teams walking in the event, Sandoval said.

“Our goal this year is raise $15,000,” Sandoval said. “With 17 teams, I think that we are going to be able to make that mark.”

The teams will camp out at Rattlers Stadium, and one member of each team will take turns walking or running around the track. One representative of each team must remain on the track at all times during the event.

Many of the events last 24 hours, and Quay County’s Relay for Life began at 6 p.m. Friday and is to end at 6 a.m. today.

Sandoval said that this event helps to get the community involved and raise awareness about the disease and the treatment options available for local residents.

“I have participated in this event for the past four years,” Sandoval said. “I know firsthand how important this is — I am a cancer survivor myself.”