We began our 2017 Susan G. Komen Atlanta 3-Day with an inspiring Opening Ceremony as the sun started to rise on a perfect, Southern fall day. Our Opening Ceremonies this year are led by participants, with special recognition given to our breast cancer survivors and those living with metastatic breast cancer.
Crew members, walkers, and supporters joined their hearts and hopes in the shared promise of bringing about the end of breast cancer, one footstep and mile at a time. Take some time to get to know our Opening Ceremony speakers.
Mona Dillard – My Family
I began walking in the Komen 3-Day seven years ago because of Debbie and Gwen, my older sisters. Debbie passed away in 2004, after a 17-year breast cancer battle; she was 51. Then in 2010, Gwen received her diagnosis on her 59th birthday. It was at that moment that I knew I needed to do more. So I registered for my first 3-Day. Today, Gwen is a 7-year survivor, and she has walked the Atlanta 3-Day with me five times. This event has been a family affair and I could not do it without their support. I’m Mona and I am More Than Pink.
Alicia Batchelor – My Friend
I walk for my friend, Kathy, who has been battling triple negative breast cancer and has endured a mastectomy, chemotherapy, radiation and is currently participating in an immunotherapy clinical trial. I walk so that Kathy can continue to celebrate her young daughters’ birthdays and watch them experience the beauty of falling in love. And I walk so that all our friends and daughters can live in a world without breast cancer. I’m Alicia and I am More Than Pink.
Krystle Murray – My Mom
I walk in celebration of my mom, Michele Murray, who lost her battle with breast cancer just over three years ago, at the age of 56. My family and friends, some of whom did not know my mom, join us on the walk―to toast her life, her experiences, and our memories together. No matter how busy our lives get, we come back to the 3-Day to grieve, to reflect, and to be inspired. I’m Krystle and I am More Than Pink.
Marsha Williams – My Children
I started walking in 2005, shortly after my mother-in-law underwent a double mastectomy. My children were 2, 5, and 7 at the time. Now they are 15, 18 and 20. Haley and Sarah have walked and crewed many times over the last few years, but this is Garrett’s first year on the Youth Corps. And my fiancé is on the Moto Crew for the second time. My children are now old enough to decide to be a part of this experience on their own, and they have made the decision to keep returning with me. I’m Marsha and I am More Than Pink.
Wade Eckman – My Wife
My beautiful wife, Kristina, passed from breast cancer this May after a courageous three-and-a-half-year battle. I am here with family―including her parents and siblings―and we are walking to honor her and to raise money to help find a cure so that other families do not have to lose their loved ones to this disease. I’m Wade and I am More Than Pink.
Riley Weston – My Sister
I wish I didn’t have to walk. I wish there was no reason for me―or for any of us―to walk. I wish that instead, for these three days, we could simply celebrate the cures for breast cancer. But even more than that, I wish for my sissy to still be here. So, I walk. I’ll walk every year. I’ll raise as much money as I possibly can so that one day soon, there will be a cure. I’m Riley and I am More Than Pink.
Jennifer Webb – Ceremony Host
I started walking the 3-Day after my mom and her sister were both diagnosed with breast cancer within one month of each other. I felt so helpless, and the 3-Day seemed like the biggest thing I could do at the time. I continue to walk because while my aunt is a thriving survivor, my mom lost her long and painful battle with breast cancer last September. My mom was my best friend in the world and I wasn’t done learning from her or making memories with her. My mom’s goal was to walk San Diego with me this November. Unfortunately, I will be walking without her, but I will walk FOR her, and I will continue to walk until there is a cure.
I’m Jennifer, I am More Than Pink… and I’m honored to welcome you to the 2017 Atlanta 3-Day! As one of your fellow walkers, I’m excited to welcome you all to this beautiful city…