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Cancer, a universal problem

Is there really an entity of some kind that truly does not see race? Is there really an entity of some kind that makes no judgment based on age or religion? Is there really such an entity that does not have any preconceived notions of men or women?

Yes. It is cancer.

If ever there was anything in our world that is equal opportunity, it is cancer.

Cancer does not strike any one group over another. It does not select those with high school educations over those with college degrees. In cancer’s eyes we are all equal, all one.

It is that singular focus to attack anyone at anytime that makes cancer — in all its forms — such a deadly and methodical disease. It is for this reason the fight against it must have a singular focus.

Over the past decades, tremendous strides have been made in the battle against cancer. New drugs and procedures have been developed. New precautions and preventative measures have been studied and shared. And, as a result, the quality of life for cancer patients has improved and the chances for beating cancer have begun to swing in our favor.

Tuesday night, organizers with the American Cancer Society, along with local, dedicated volunteers, kicked off fundraising efforts for the annual Relay for Life. The Suffolk Relay for Life — or rather the Suffolk Rockin’ Relay — has set forth a goal this year of $212,000.

Needless to say, this is a lofty goal in tough economic times. But with so many volunteers and organizers who have taken on cancer and won, do you really think it’s a good idea to bet against them?

The local Relay for Life, in conjunction with similar events throughout the country, has helped generate millions upon millions of dollars to help fund cancer research. Combined with corporation donations, teams large and small have worked to raise this money, with the ultimate goal of eliminating cancer and making it a story for the history books.

Right now, local teams are setting up fundraising plans to help generate as much as they can to reach the $212,000 goal set before them. But, in the end, the dollar goal is just a means to an end — an end that sees the ultimate defeat of cancer and the end to a long, hard fight.

For information on the Suffolk Rockin’ Relay for Life, log on to www.suffolkrockinrelay.org.