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Temperatures dont dampen spirits at Relay for Life
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It was a sweltering, but successful, Relay For Life Friday night, despite temperatures that soared into the mid-90s. The crowd braved the heat to gather at Nunley Stadium to raise money to aid the American Cancer Society in its battle to find a cure.
This year’s theme was “Celebrate, Remember, Fight Back” and event chairman Dwight Burch said Warren County residents, as always, showed their enthusiastic support and generous nature as the local Relay moves into its second million in funds raised for cancer research.
“Tonight’s going great,” Burch said. “We have more teams this year than we’ve ever had participating. We have more teams on the track than we’ve ever had. I think attendance is going to equal what we’ve had before. It was a little bit light early on when the temperature was 95 or so, but the people are here, they’re participating, the kids are loving the games, people are eating at all the booths. We’ve got any kind of food here, I think, that you could ever want.”
Burch says Relay gives people a chance to demonstrate their unity in the battle against cancer.
“I think it gives people a sense of ‘OK, we’re all in this together,’” Burch said. “I know people who have cancer,  somebody else knows someone who has cancer, and I may not be able to do a lot by myself, but if I join with the thousands of other people who are in on this Relay then we can do something, we can make some things happen, and hopefully someday find a cure.”
Burch says he is proud of the $1 million milestone the Warren County Relay reached last year, but admits it’s a bit hard to assimilate.
“You know, starting out you raise $60,000 or $90,000 and you think, ‘Wow, that’s great,’” Burch said. “But to say $1 million, and I won’t say I didn’t think we’d ever get there, but you don’t put that kind of a number with that many zeros out there and say OK, we’re going to get there in five years, eight years, but to hit it in our ninth year it really says something about this event and the people in this county.
“Especially the last three years or so the way the economy’s been, but you know that’s been our three biggest years. It’s amazing. Some of these teams have been meeting since last year. We had people on Monday after Relay last year calling wanting to know what this year’s theme was. That’s how dedicated this community is to making this Relay successful. It’s really great.”