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Cat Berg

Special Correspondent

 

The annual Walk for Breast Cancer hosted at the First Congregational Church in Holliston to celebrate the lives of those who have suffered because of this disease will take place on October 19th.

Over 300 people come to the event every year which is always hosted at the First Congregational Church, or the “Congo” as many locals call it. The Walk hosted here is only one of many hosted around the country by the Walking Company.

Kathy Chisholm, who organizes the event, and has been a member of the board since the beginning 11 years ago, always loves “looking out and seeing all the participants gathered under the trees and in the green waiting for it to start.”

Many people from Holliston walk in this event to show support for survivors and families who lost loved ones. Local businesses show their support by donating money.  An average of $45,000 dollars is raised each year to help support the Dana Farber foundation, with a total of 500,000 raised so far, which helps people all over the country who have breast cancer, said Chisholm.

Maryellen Miller was was one of the kickstarters of the original event. She had approached the board to see if they could host a local Walk. They had been thinking of starting one and agreed. Miller died in 2008, one of the most successful years both in terms of walkers and money raised  for the Walk because many people came out to show support for the family, said Chisholm.

“The Walk is such an important event because of its impact on the community and its incredibly rewarding to be a part of something,” said Chisholm.

Senior Maggie Hamre leads her field hockey team in the walk each year to show their support. Each year they raise awareness in October, which is Breast Cancer awareness month. They host a Play for the Cure game during which they raise funds and wear t-shirts for the event.

“As a team we like to dedicate everything for the cause in October. My teammates’ moms have survived this disease and we do everything we can,” Hamre said.

The first Walk in 2002 was only expected to have 30-50 walkers, but in the end 144 walkers came and they raised a total of $40,000 that year, according to Chisholm.

Junior Tracey Miller, daughter of Maryellen Miller, is always a big part of the Walk. She is the one who usually picked out the color of the shirts for the Walk. When asked if she would come back each year, Miller responded “Always.”

“My family is very involved in planning the Walk. We help to set up everything, and are always the first ones there and the last ones to leave each year,” said Miller.

The event will be on October 19 at 1:30 pm on the Church green. Many people go each year, and the board hopes that people will continue to come; they hope to raise as much money as they can to support those in need.

New walkers can “utilize our webpage, it makes it very easy for people to donate to the Walk,” said Chisholm. For more information on the Walk go to http://www.hollistonwalks.org

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