Relay for Life in full swing

A pair of Marysville girls dress up for a recnet Relay for Life rally. - Travis Sherer
A pair of Marysville girls dress up for a recnet Relay for Life rally.
— image credit: Travis Sherer

MARYSVILLE — Linda Elledge was introduced to the Marysville Relay for Life in 2009.

Having been afflicted by cancer herself, along with losing a handful of close people in her family to the disease, including her husband, mother, aunt and uncle among others, the event really struck her.

“It was just a moment of clarity while we were walking and I heard those three words: celebrate, remember and fight,” she said. “It all clicked and it was a very emotional time for me.”

Fast forward a year and Elledge is the event chair and the Relay for Life is back in Marysville, albeit with a change of venue. Usually held at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, the event has been moved to Asbery Field due to M-P’s track being remodeled.

“I picked (Asbery Field) because its location, off Fourth (Street),” she said. “Hopefully a lot of people will walk by and get introduced to the walk because once they learn about it, they get hooked.”

There is a lot at this year’s relay to catch the eye of an onlooker who might pass by starting at 1 p.m. on June 12 and ending at approximately 8 p.m. the following day. After the opening ceremonies, there is the cancer survivors lap, but after that, there are themes that include ‘60s and ‘70s garb, along with pajamas and best hat.

Music will accompany the event, while starting with recorded songs, it will eventually turn to a live band, “Electric DNA” which features the vocal stylings of Diana Ruiz and the nationally renowned harmonica skills of Alfredo Barranco. The band has played at venues around Snohomish County recently, including La Hacienda, the Flying Pig and the Prohibition Grille to raise money for the relay. So far that total is approximately $3,000.

As far as the whole event is concerned, Elledge and the rest of the relay committee has set a goal for $150,000, which would be considerably more than the roughly $130,000 raised in 2009. But the relay isn’t short the support to achieve such a number, as Dennis Kendall and Vern Little, mayors of Marysville and Lake Stevens, will be on hand, as will the key note speaker, Dr. Tom Huxford, who is a cancer researcher from California.

Huxford will speak about how close research is to actually curing certain types of cancer.

“We’re really excited to have him come up to speak and he’ll be walking with the teams and talking with survivors.”

As of June 2, 45 teams of at least 10 people apiece have signed up for the relay, and Elledge said they are anticipating as many as 1,000 people to participate.

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