Belly Dancing for Breast Cancer

Shilpa,

Shilpa, Swati, and Ritu sport their dancing gear for Day 1 of the Philadelphia 3-Day

On the Susan G. Komen 3-Day, fashion is everything. Pink is obvious, but anything that complements pink can work. Actually, anything goes on the 3-Day. What caught my eye was a great little accessory on each of three women at Pit Stop 1 on the Philadelphia 3-Day.

A well-crafted hip scarf.

Not just any hip scarf, mind you. Handmade, shiny hip scarfs with plenty of bangles. Shilpa, Ritu, and Swati are friends living in the Philadelphia area who decided to walk 60 miles in October with the Komen 3-Day to raise funds to help end breast cancer. The three are all Information Technology professionals in the area, brought together by common friends and family. “My mother is a breast cancer survivor in India,” said Shilpa. “She is doing fine now, but I just wanted to get out and do something about it.” Swati and Ritu were friends from college and had been challenging each other with half marathons.

Shilpa, Ritu, and Swati hit the Philadelphia streets on Day 3 of 60 miles to find a cure for breast cancer

Shilpa, Ritu, and Swati hit the Philadelphia streets on Day 3 of 60 miles

Swati mentioned that their families had been really supportive of this long journey through the streets of Philadelphia. “My husband brought us drinks on the route on Day 1!” she beamed. “We’ve named him the MVH for now. The Most Valuable Husband! We’ll see if another husband can overtake him!” Evidently, they were looking to compete, as the women were expecting some awesome homemade food for lunch from these gentlemen on Day 2.

The girls leave goals on the Inspiration Board

The women leave goals on the Inspiration Board at Opening Ceremony

And how did a group of three first-time walkers raise $2300 a piece for breast cancer? They made their world-famous hip scarves, of course. Oh, and then held a well-attended belly dancing class in Exton, Pennsylvania, complete with Mediterranean food. Sixty women participated in all, a raging success for these fun, innovative first-timers.

Can’t wait to see what they come up with next. They will be rolling into the Navy Yard today with over 1,200 participants and over 300 volunteers to help find a cure for breast cancer. Cheer them on!

The women leave the Convention Center on Day 3 ready to walk the last 20 miles

The women leave the Convention Center on Day 3 ready to walk the last 20 miles

“I’ll Help Anywhere”

Brad is flanked by family and flag bears at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

Brad is flanked by flag bearers at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

‘Are you comfortable with a walkie talkie?’ read the first email. Brad T replied, ‘Yes’ to that email. ‘Can you drive a large box truck?’ Again he replied ‘Yes.’ He realized that the first two emails were blanket emails to his volunteer ‘Crew’ on the Susan G. Komen Philadelphia 3-Day in 2012. The next email was only to him: ‘Would you be the Captain of your crew?’

He laughed and accepted. “I was on the ‘I’ll Help Anywhere’ Crew and ended up on Grab and Go B, a small pit stop supporting over a thousand Susan G. Komen 3-Day® walkers on their 60-mile journey to raise research money for breast cancer. Brad, a tax guy by day, dons a pink shirt and a pink baseball cap for the event, hardly the attire of his usual working life. Brad’s story, however, is personal and can bring tears in a moment.

Brad T carries the flag "My Wife" in honor of Sabrina, who passed away from breast cancer

Brad T carries the flag “My Wife” in honor of Sabrina, who passed away from breast cancer

His wife and mother of his four children, Sabrina, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2007. “We were married for 32 years,” said Brad at Pit Stop 1 on Saturday. “We met in southern California in 1979; both of us were there for work. We were married in the church we met in!” Brad first was a volunteer at the breast cancer fundraising event in 2010, helping on the Sunday when the walkers and regular crew members celebrate at the end of their 60-mile journey. “I wanted to walk in 2011, but Sabrina was just too sick,” mentions Brad. Sabrina passed away in May of 2012. “I’m excited to walk this year for the first time and carry the flag in her honor.” Several individuals are asked to represent their loved ones in the Opening and Closing Ceremonies with flags. Brad is carrying one that reads: “My Wife.”

Brad T honors his wife Sabrina at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

Brad T honors his wife Sabrina at the Opening Ceremony of the Philadelphia 3-Day

Amazingly, this has been a banner for the entire family. His older daughter and his youngest son are walking with him. His younger daughter joined the Young Women Walking (YW2) group, which supports girls and guys 16-23 in one day of a Komen 3-Day®. They still raise at least $750, and they walk the entire 20+ miles on Day 2 of the route. “In all, our goal was well over $6900,” says Brad, “but we raised over $10,000 together.” This dedication and commitment to the cause is always inspiring. What a team! Give a shoutout to Brad and his family this weekend on their first 3-Day as walkers!

Brad, family, and friends celebrate the end of Day 1 on the Philadelphia 3-Day

Brad, family, and friends celebrate the end of Day 1 on the Philadelphia 3-Day

 

Top Philadelphia 3-Day Fundraisers

The Philadelphia 3-Day is in full swing tonight after 21.5 miles, dinner and some excellent entertainment. During the camp show, three individuals were brought onstage for their efforts (and one to represent her excellent team!). Congratulations to all those who are walking the Susan G. Komen Philadelphia 3-Day and to their fundraising efforts! Here are some of the top fundraisers for 2013:

Top Crew Fundraiser: Margie Nolan Tomassetti; $5,550

Presenting Sponsor Bank of America

Presenting Sponsor Bank of America awards the Top Crew Fundraiser award to Margie Nola Tomassetti (who was not present)

Top Fundraising Team: Breast Friends of Pennsylvania, $121,325; Vivian Vega Schoch (Captain)

The award for

The award for Top Fundraising Team went to Breast Friends of Pennsylvania, with Vivian Vega Schoch as captain. Shawn Schoch and Christine Yeni-Camper accepted the award

Top Individual Fundraiser: Riley Weston, $24,005; Team Faith Girlz

Riley Weston accepts the award from Bank of America for Top Individual Fundraiser for the Philadelphia 3-Day

Riley Weston accepts the award from Bank of America for Top Individual Fundraiser for the Philadelphia 3-Day

These numbers are overwhelming and show the dedication of those walking the Philadelphia 3-Day to help find a cure for breast cancer.  Good luck on Day 2, walkers!