The Herkimer County Community College campus was taken over by hundreds of participants in the annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk on Saturday.
This marked the second year HCCC has sponsored and hosted the outdoor walk. Faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members came out to support the American Cancer Society’s efforts to conduct life saving research, prevention, early detection and search for a cure.
“The goal is to bring together as many people as possible to stand up to breast cancer, especially since October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month,” said walk organizer Donna Testa, a professor at the college. “Breast cancer is something that will touch many people’s lives, which is why raising awareness is important. Events like this get the word out that early detection is key.”
HCCC has organized breast cancer awareness walks the past five years.
“Previous walks took place inside the college gymnasium and were only open to faculty, staff and students. Last year, we moved the walk outside and opened it to the community, so it is something that continues to grow every year. This year, we had participation from the Mohawk Valley Health Care Center in Ilion and we hope it is a relationship that we can continue to build on for future walks. It was great to see the center’s residents and staff enjoying themselves on the walk.”
Linda Rae Avolio was the honorary chair of the one-mile walk.
“It’s great to see so many people come out in support of Making Strides and breast cancer awareness,” said Avolio, who noted she has been involved with Making Strides Against Breast Cancer since its inception. “The funds raised as a result of this walk will make a difference in people’s lives.”
Avolio invited the participants in Saturday morning’s walk, as well as community members at large, to join her and thousands of other walkers at the Masonic Care Community on Sunday, Oct. 21, for the Utica area Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk. The walk will start at 10 a.m.
HCCC President Dr. Ann Marie Murray thanked Saturday’s walkers, particularly those with ties to the college, for helping to spread the message the “Generals Care.” “All of us need to do our part to raise awareness about not only breast cancer, but all forms of cancer,” she said.
The walk was part of Fall Fest and Alumni Weekend at HCCC.
It was co-sponsored by the HCCC men’s and women’s basketball teams.