A big thanks to our sponsors, participants, supporters, and volunteers for making the 19th Annual Mary’s Walk and Kerrymen 5k a success! Despite having to move the event from March 19th to March 26th, we had over 2,600 participants and will raise in excess of $280,000 in the fight against cancer. All proceeds are donated to the Maine Cancer Foundation supporting statewide cancer programs and translational research.
Mary’s Walk enjoyed incredible fundraising team participation led by Team UNUM, who raised $15,000. Teri Brown of Team UNUM individually raised over $11,076. Incredible! Doug Bennet and the Red Storm Strikes Out Cancer was again the leading fundraiser in the school community group raising $10,501. In the Friends and Family category, the KJ Cancer Crew, led by individual fundraiser Ken Jansen and captained by wife Laurie Jansen, raised $8,475. This year’s event was dedicated to Ken Jansen, a long-time volunteer on the Mary’s Walk Planning Committee, who is fighting his own personal battle with esophageal cancer. Ken spoke during the opening ceremonies, inspiring everyone with his message of how important a positive attitude is to healing the cells that cancer scars.
I want to again personally thank Mark Stevens and Mike Hirschy of CRI-SIL Silicone Technologies for being our presenting sponsor ($20,000). Mark, Mike, and the CRI-SIL team have given the Mary’s Walk sponsorship campaign renewed vigor in the fight against cancer.
I also want to thank all of our sponsors you see posted on our web page. These businesses are an important part of Mary’s Walk and help lead our community in the fight against cancer. Please check out our sponsors and let them know on their websites how important you believe their contribution to the community is in the battle against cancer.
I wish to thank Thornton Academy for the use of their facility and their continued support of Mary’s Walk. I also want to recognize two teachers at the Academy: David Arenstam, the director of the Kerrymen 5k and our Facebook/Media genius, and his wife, Teri Arenstam, our director of volunteers, for their contributions to the event. This year we had over 150 TA students volunteering for Mary’s Walk and supporting their community.
We had a new member of the Planning Committee this year, Don Roth, who is the new director of the food court specializing in free food and drink after the event. Don undertook an overwhelming responsibility and did an excellent job in his inaugural year. Thanks Don!
Next year, Mary’s Walk and the Kerrymen 5k celebrate our 20th anniversary on March 18, 2018. We hope to see you there.
The Mary's Walk Committee met at the home of committee chairman Gene Libby on Saturday to present a check with this year's proceeds to Tara Hill, executive director of Maine Cancer Foundation.
Gail and Dean Wolfahrt were also presented with a special plaque honoring their many years of dedication to Mary's Walk. The check presented to Maine Cancer Foundation totaled $240,700. This brings our 18-year running total to $2,767,892, all dedicated to fighting cancer here in Maine. Quite amazing!
A special thank you to the Portland Seadogs and the Mother's Day 5K for a very generous contribution of $6,000 to continue the fight against cancer in Maine. One of our board members, Dr. Gayle Brazeau (pictured far left) was on hand to receive the contribution at Hadlock Field.
We need your help!
There are two fantastic community events coming up and we're looking for an army of volunteer to make it all happen:
Portland, Maine. On Wednesday, May 11th we were fortunate to welcome Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee to the stage of the Abromson Center at the University of Southern Maine for a fascinating lecture covering his Pulitzer Prize-winning book, "The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer."
In the course of the evening Dr. Mukherjee covered the history of cancer, including a native Maine boy, Einar Gustafson (later nicknamed "Jimmy"), who would go on to become the inspiration for The Jimmy Fund at the Dana-Farber Institute.