May 23 12:17 PM

Capac rallies for Relay

Third annual ACS fundraiser at high school track this weekend

June 23, 2010
CAPAC — The third annual Capac Relay for Life will take place this Saturday and Sunday at the high school track. The 24 hour American Cancer Society fundraiser begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday. More than 120 participants comprising 15 teams are gearing up to walk and take part in an array of fun activities that celebrate cancer survivors and honor the memories of others.

Chairperson Jennifer Hollenbeck said although participation is down slightly, organizers are excited that a handful of new teams will be participating in their first relay.

"We realize that times are tough but people should know that they are supporting a good cause," Hollenbeck said.

The public is welcome to attend the Relay at any time, whether it's walking around the track or participating in one of several ceremonies.

Survivors will be treated to a special lunch at noon followed by a survivors ceremony at 1 p.m.

The 'Fight Back' ceremony begins at 3 p.m.

A silent auction runs from 2 to 6 p.m.

Games and activities for children will be offered throughout the day too.

More than 120 participants are gearing up for the 24 hour Capac Relay for Life.

The luminaria ceremony will begin around 9:45 p.m. Candles and torches are lit in honor of cancer victims and survivors.

A sunrise service with Pastor Lisa Clark from Zion United Methodist Church begins at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday followed by the closing ceremonies at 8 a.m.

Hollenbeck, who lost both of her parents to cancer, said she participates in the Relay for Life with the hope that the disease will be a thing of the past for her three children and future generations.

Hollenbeck's friend, Marci Orrell of Emmett, has the same hopes. A three-year relay participant herself, Marci lost her father to cancer and today her family is dealing with her five year-old nephew's leukemia diagnosis. "I always say I'm not a doctor or a researcher, so the Relay feels like my 'something' I can do to help," Marci said.

With the help of some good friends, Marci's team, Charlie's Angels, have found success in their fundraising efforts including a yard sale and euchre party.

Brandon Orrell was diagnosed when he was only three years old. His parents took him to the emergency room thinking he had a prolonged case of the flu. The doctor made an almost immediate diagnosis, his aunt said.

Brandon spent many days in the hospital fighting off infections. Currently he takes a chemo pill every day.

"He's a sweet five year-old who does everything a normal kid would do," Marci said.

"He has a port in his neck for medicine but he shrugs it off."

Whether experiencing the death of a parent as a child or watching a child suffer from cancer themselves, the disease is devastating all around, Marci said.

She's happy that Brandon will be attending his third survivor ceremony at the Capac Relay this Saturday.

With the help of some good friends, Marci's team, Charlie's Angels, have found success in their fundraising efforts including a yard sale and euchre party.

For more information about the Capac Relay, go to

Maria Brown joined the Tri-City Times staff in 2003, the same year she earned a bachelor's degree in English from Calvin College. Born and raised in Imlay City, she now resides north of Capac where she enjoys working on the farm, gardening and reading.
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