Students take fight to cancer

Published 8:40 pm Friday, May 7, 2010

Cancer doesn’t discriminate based on age, and students at Nansemond-Suffolk Academy are proving that age also doesn’t affect their ability to help.

“Cancer doesn’t affect a specific age group of people,” said senior Baron Goodman. “Cancer doesn’t care if you’re 3 years old or 100. Cancer affects everybody and anybody can get it. So, anybody should help. It doesn’t matter how old you are.”

Each year, the school serves as the location for the annual Suffolk Rockin’ Relay for Life, and this year there are 17 teams from the school that will relay and fundraise for the cause.

This year’s Suffolk Rockin’ Relay for Life will be held Friday, May 14 and Saturday, May 15.

“This is the third school I’ve been to, but the first one that hosts the event and puts forward such a big effort,” Goodman said. “It makes me proud to be a part of it.”

Around this time of year, “you hear about different fundraisers a lot,” said freshman Lindsay Elliott, who is participating for the second year with the school’s girls’ lacrosse team. “It’s like a competition around the school. We all want to raise more than everyone else. It’s a great cause and good reason to be competitive.”

Elliott’s team has made $300 from a bake sale.

Goodman has been involved in the Relay for the past three years and joined the Interact Club’s Interaction Faction team this year.

“We’ve already raised $500 and have an ultimate Frisbee tournament coming up after the Relay,” Goodman said. “It’s a good cause and something we want to be involved in. ”

Goodman’s classmate, Anne Stuart Riddick, is the captain of her team, Bailey Bunch, which has raised nearly $300 from a car wash and powder puff football game.

Sophomore Taylor Tutwiler got involved with the Garrett Booker Experience team last year and is selling raffle tickets for quilts her team helped make. Her team is also asking local businesses for donations.

Having lost her grandmother to cancer in 2006, Tutwiler knows firsthand the impact cancer can have.

“It has certainly given me a tie to the cause,” Tutwiler said. “I know I’m helping her.”

While the students are raising funds for the Relay, it has also taught them the importance of civic duty.

“It’s about the Golden Rule,” Elliott said. “You never know what could happen to you.”

“Cancer is one of those things that comes out of nowhere, and affects us all — whether you have it or know someone who does,” Goodman said. “It doesn’t make sense for us not to do what we can.”