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Hartselle Enquirer

Cancer: The disease that affects us all


It’s one of the scariest words in the English language. No one wants to hear that word, whether it’s from your doctor, a family member, friend or even someone you don’t know at all.

We all know someone who has cancer, died of cancer or is a survivor of cancer. We hear about it frequently in the news or read about it in news stories and other articles you find on the Internet.

We know a lot about it. We know about different types of cancer. We know what are many of the primary causes of cancer. We even know a lot about the types of cancer treatments you can receive.

However, it doesn’t lessen the impact when you hear about another person who has been diagnosed with cancer.

Even just this morning as I’m writing this column, we had heard about another person who had been diagnosed with cancer. And the reaction was just the same – shock and almost immediate sadness for that person.

The National Cancer Institute estimates that nearly 12 million Americans with a history of cancer were alive in January 2008. Some of these individuals were cancer free, while others still had evidence of cancer and may have been undergoing treatment.

Another 1.6 million people will be diagnosed with cancer this year. This means, millions of other loved ones will be affected by this horrible disease.

Thankfully, doctors are at work trying to find the cure. And to help the doctors, many others are helping raise money for cancer awareness and research during the annual Relay for Life.

This year’s event is just one month away at J.P. Cain Stadium. It’s not just a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, but it’s also a time to remember those who have died from cancer, celebrate with those who have survived cancer and support those who are currently fighting cancer.

While we’re nearing the April 20-21 event date, there is still plenty of time to participate in the event. You can log on to www.relayforlife.org/hartselle to register as an individual or as a team.

You can also support those teams that are currently fundraising by making donations or participating in their fundraising events.

Let’s do what we can do help find a cure so that others will not be affected by cancer.

Brent Maze is the managing editor of the Hartselle Enquirer.