Even with a chill in the air, the Texas sun rose on a beautiful Opening Ceremony at the Collin Creek Mall on Friday morning for the start of the 2013 Susan G. Komen Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day. Crew members gathered even earlier than the walkers (in the dark!) to set up and ready themselves for over 1,200 participants who took to the streets, pounding 60 miles of the pavement to raise $3.3 million for breast cancer research and prevention. Participants walked 20.6 miles on the first day with Aldridge Elementary children packing the sidewalks to cheer them on. Richardson’s Fire Department and Police Department were particularly supportive, stopping along the way to cheer and help with street crossings.
Bank of America gathered up a great group of employees to pump up the walkers at Pit Stop 3, which was staffed by local Susan G. Komen affiliate employees. Beautiful weather continued throughout the day as walkers moved from Plano, Richardson, Dallas, and onto to Brookhaven College in Farmers Ranch, the site of camp. The Camp Show at night is a time to be entertained, to recognize those who have gone above and beyond in fundraising and overall commitment to finding a cure, and to hear inspirational messages from survivors. Friday night did not disappoint as Delese Hill-Range gave a touching address, and Cathy Hite was recognized with the Milestone Award for her serious commitment to the cause of fighting breast cancer.
Day 2 started out chilly but exciting as walkers lined up for the opening of the route and the 19.8 miles that awaited them. The New Balance-sponsored cheerleaders from Bishop Lynch Friars cheered the walkers into Pit Stop 2, and participants were greeted with some great trail walking and a huge cheering station sponsored by Susan G. Komen North Texas Affiliate just before some well deserved lunch. A big ‘Thank You’ to the city of Addison for its hospitality on Day 2! On return to camp, walkers retreated to the Bank of America massage chairs and, if needed, to the help of our great Medical Crew. At the Camp Show, co-survivor Burt Lipshie and young survivor Cara Welsh gave fresh perspective on why we continue to fight against breast cancer.
Day 3 started out with big smiles knowing that it would be the final miles before the finish of the event. The Crew helped facilitate a bus drop to the Ursuline Academy where the route opened onto the 16.8-mile course that would take participants through some of the beautiful parks of Dallas and into the city. An anticipatory excitement awaited so many first-time walkers as they neared the finish line in Centennial Park. The cheers of family and friends brought many tears to the walkers who had come so far. An emotional Closing Ceremony outside in great weather at the Fair Park reminded us of the loved ones we have lost. With one shoe held high, participants gave tribute to those breast cancer survivors with us today on the Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day. The crowd danced to “We Are Family” as the Susan G. Komen Dallas/Fort Worth 3-Day wrapped up. See you next year in Texas!