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Still fighting: Relay falls short of goal but there’s still time

By Erika Pedroza | Published Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Laps have been walked, campsites have been cleaned and the money raised during the 12th Annual Relay For Life of Wise County has been counted and recorded.

However, the books aren’t closed on the fundraising year.

That’s good news for the local event that is still $35,776.20 short of the $110,000 goal set by its committee members.

WALKING TO HONOR - Guirnalda Lopez and Marissa Martinez hold a sign bearing a photo of their mom and second mom, Monica Lopez, during the survivor lap of the Relay For Life of Wise County Friday. Lopez, who avidly participated in Relay in honor of her parents, who are both cancer survivors, is currently battling breast cancer and was unable to attend this year's event after undergoing surgery earlier in the week. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

WALKING TO HONOR – Guirnalda Lopez and Marissa Martinez hold a sign bearing a photo of their mom and second mom, Monica Lopez, during the survivor lap of the Relay For Life of Wise County Friday. Lopez, who avidly participated in Relay in honor of her parents, who are both cancer survivors, is currently battling breast cancer and was unable to attend this year’s event after undergoing surgery earlier in the week. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

“Even though this event is wrapping up, we can continue to raise money and have it count for this event,” committee chair Stephanie Kott told the participants present around 6 a.m. Saturday, at the close of the all-night event.

Now through Aug. 31, team members can arrange a meeting to turn in money by emailing Wise County’s ACS staff partner, Nanette Stockstill, at nanette.stockstill@cancer.org.

As of Tuesday afternoon, 46 teams had raised $74,233.80.

The Friends team, started by the late Katie Stevens and her colleagues at Decatur schools, led the roster with $8,377.67. Vicky and Jimmie’s Angels, whose team captain is Orvalda Bridges, raised $5,135, less than $10 ahead of Paradise High School’s $5,125.01.

Kott, who captains the Paradise team, led all indivial participants with $5,035.01. Reagan Trachta, who received a $1,140 pledge from her sorority (Delta Zeta at Texas A&M University), was second with $1,150. Rounding out the top three, Christian Cross raised $850.

Despite the hefty individual contributions, the efforts were more than $30,000 short of last year’s $104,657 net income.

“The biggest two factors in the shortfall were big teams not returning that were teams im 2012 and returning teams not raising as much as they did,” said Stockstill.

“But we aren’t giving up,” Kott said The committee will plan a summer fundraiser in the coming months.

Regardless of the shortfall, organizers commended the efforts and accomplishments of committee members and teams,

“I’m very proud that we did get more teams, survivors and caregivers this year,” Kott said. “If it weren’t for (the committee and teams), Relay would not be the successful event that it is each year.

“And even though we did not reach the goal we set, I’m still very excited to know we did raise a lot of money that will make a huge difference in the fight against cancer and help so many.”

THRIVING AND SURVIVING - Cancer survivors walk the opening lap of the 12th Annual Relay For Life of Wise County Friday. The warriors were honored during a reception before the event's opening ceremony and at a dinner last month. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

THRIVING AND SURVIVING – Cancer survivors walk the opening lap of the 12th Annual Relay For Life of Wise County Friday. The warriors were honored during a reception before the event’s opening ceremony and at a dinner last month. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

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