Walking for a cure

Annual 3K benefiting the American Cancer Society to be held Saturday


Stephany Jara

JWAC co-sponsor Jayne Keane speaks to JWAC members about the importance of participating in Saturday’s Walk of Love.

Junior World Affairs Council (JWAC) will be holding the Walk of Love, a 3K walk to raise money for the American Cancer Society for cancer research, on Saturday, Feb. 24 from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m.

“We are walking for the people that we love, for research to prevent cancer or for research to improve cancer treatment to treat the people who already have cancer,” JWAC co-sponsor Jayne Keane said. “We’re walking for our family and friends who’ve had cancer or who may get cancer in the future.”

Keane is especially passionate about the Walk of Love because she is a cancer survivor herself. She began treatment in October of 2015 and finished in the fall of 2017.

“I was very physically active,” Keane said. “I had my knees replaced and my feet reconstructed and I thought I [was] ready to go. Not even a year later I found out [I had breast cancer]. I felt in the shower and I had some golf-ball sized lymph nodes. In fact it took them two or three biopsies to find it. I was diagnosed and had a double mastectomy. [I went through] six months of chemo and five surgeries. It was awful. [I] lost all my hair. I was so sick, I couldn’t eat anything. And I lost 70 pounds. But I’m here.”

JWAC members along with Keane and co-sponsor Ryan Hamilton will be walking from the pool parking lot behind the school straight down Valley Parkway, taking a right on 3040 and crossing over at the crosswalk to Harmon.

“I’m nervous over the weather,” JWAC member Michelle Gonzales said. “It’s been inconsistent lately, so it should rain on the day of the walk. We’re walking regardless of the kind of weather that day.”

Students will be able to donate in the buckets manned by JWAC members during lunch in the cafeteria. Anyone may also sponsor a JWAC member by donating money. Members will be taking donations through the end of the month. All donations will go to American Cancer Society.

“My great-grandmother was also diagnosed with a certain type of cancer,” JWAC member Christopher Camilo said. “She’s dealing with a lot of pain and I want to help them find a cure for that. Maybe with this Walk of Love, with the money we will raise, we will find a cure or maybe further the progress of that.”

Students who want to participate in the Walk of Love should contact Keane or Hamilton through email before Saturday, Feb. 24. All are welcome to join.

“Cancer affects one to four Americans and victims are becoming younger and younger,” Keane said. “We walk to raise money for the American Cancer Society to help fight [for] cancer-finding cures and new research to stop cancer, who affects so many people in the United States.”