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Student voices: Step out for a good cause

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high school Rosemount, 55024

Rosemount Minnesota P.O. Box 192 / 312 Oak St. 55024

Almost everyone has been affected by cancer, some more than others. Some people enjoy helping the cause, some people choose not to. I am the kind of person that likes to help the cause, and the past few years I have thoroughly enjoyed it.

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When I got to high school, I joined the High Schools Against Cancer Club. I didn't have anyone really close to me that was affected by cancer but I still liked to support the cause. We went to the Hope Lodge a few times, helped out at sporting events that raised money for cancer, and the summer that I was going into 10th grade, I joined my friend Rachel's Relay for Life Team last minute.

I wasn't sure what to expect. I was actually kind of nervous. Rachel explained it all to me. She said that we are all split up into teams. We get our own little campsite, set up lawn chairs and at least one person from our team has to be on the track at all times, walking during the night.

There were 10 of us on the team, and it was one of the best experiences of my life. There was a lot of money raised for the American Cancer Society, which will help many patients. I quickly decided that I was going to make my own team the next year because I had so much fun and wanted more people to share the great experience. My grandpa was diagnosed with cancer last year, which gave me another reason to do it again. Last year our team "The Sunnies" had a great time raising money for the ACS and I decided I would definitely keep it up as long as possible.

Unfortunately, my family's life was turned upside down this spring when my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. We took it kind of rough at first, but it got better. She is now responding well to chemotherapy. She gives me another reason to walk with my team throughout the night. What my team is doing is nothing compared to what my mom is going through.

I highly encourage you all, the population of Rosemount and neighboring towns, to also participate in an event, whether it's a relay, whether it supports cancer patients, whether it supports MS, whether it donates to the poor, anything to help other people. Just because the cause doesn't directly affect you doesn't mean you can't participate. I participated in Relay for Life even though my family hadn't been drastically affected by cancer and it was an overall great experience. Now it does affect my family and I look at all the other people participating and am very grateful. Get out there and do something good, you'd be amazed at how good it feels.

If you want to find out more about joining Relay for Life, head to relayforlife.org. If you want to donate to my team or many other teams, you can search under Rosemount's Relay for Life page and donate directly on the Internet. We are also having a car wash this Saturday morning at the Rosemount Goodyear with 100 percent of the profits going to the American Cancer Society.

Rosemount's Relay for Life this year is on Friday, June 21 from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. There will be a silent auction, pork chops on a stick, plenty of concessions, a luminaria ceremony and a community coming together to help a great cause.

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