Congratulations to the 2017 Atlanta 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner

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For the 2017 Susan G. Komen 3-Day® season, we’re honored to be featuring the Local Impact Award. This award is being given to participants who have been instrumental in strengthening the 3-Day® community throughout the year. Local Impact Award honorees have gone above and beyond in their efforts leading training walks, attending 3-Day community events. They have also supported the 3-Day staff year-round at meet-ups and workshops, and in general, been making a difference by building lasting relationships and showing commitment to the 3-Day in all they do.

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Please join us in congratulating the 2017 Atlanta 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner, Char Wells.

Her teammate Chris Alexander is so proud of Char, and has experienced her support and 3-Day spirit first hand.

“When I was diagnosed, she and I talked, and her encouragement and advice was so helpful.  She is such a special lady and I love her drive.  Her determination is contiguous and her smile lights up the group!”

Knowing how much she cares for, and has given to, the whole 3-Day family, we had to hear from Char herself! When we asked her these questions, she didn’t know she would soon be selected as our winner!

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What was your inspiration to do your first 3-Day?

I had always done the “Relay for Life” but felt I could do more. Then one day I heard an ad on the radio for the 3-Day and I thought…I can do that! In December 2007 I signed up for the 2008 Walk. I walked/trained every day at lunch, and weekends but not really having a reason that I was doing this. Then in August 2008, it happened – I had breast cancer.

What has brought you back to the 3-Day year after year?

I’m so blessed to be a survivor and the atmosphere of the 3-Day is such a joy, and so heartwarming and emotional. I have said several times “maybe this year or that year will be my last one,” but then there I am walking again! I have walked with a sprained ankle; been pushed in a wheelchair for 60 miles due to a broken foot; I have walked with herniated discs in my back (just prior to surgery). We 3-Day walkers are a special kind of crazy!!

Char Pole Dancing on the 3-Day with Richard

What is the secret to your 3-Day fundraising success?

Ask! Ask everyone you know. Post on Facebook, send emails, send letters, anyway and every way you have a connection to. Getting a no doesn’t hurt, you get a no just move on to the next one.

What is your best advice to anyone walking the 3-Day?

Train and if you can, include hills. More importantly have FUN, enjoy the celebration of everyone around you. There will be tears, but that’s ok – tears become hugs, love and laughter.

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What’s a fun fact about you?

I’m a special kind of crazy!

I’ve never met a stranger and I so enjoy talking to people and getting to know them.

I love spending time with my family and friends.

When I have down time I like to play games, read or quilt.

What are the most important lessons you’ve learned on the 3-Day?

You are NOT ALONE.

Share your love, give hugs!

It’s OK to sweep (take it from someone who walked with herniated discs in her back and

ended up putting her head on a wall, bursting into tears because she was so dang

determine to complete the walk) IT’S OK TO SWEEP.

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Congratulations to the 2017 Seattle 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner

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For the 2017 Susan G. Komen 3-Day® season, we’re honored to be featuring the Local Impact Award. This award is being given to participants who have been instrumental in strengthening the 3-Day® community throughout the year. Local Impact Award honorees have gone above and beyond in their efforts leading training walks, attending 3-Day community events. They have also supported the 3-Day staff year-round at meet-ups and workshops, and in general, been making a difference by building lasting relationships and showing commitment to the 3-Day in all they do.

Please join us in congratulating the 2017 Seattle 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner, Judy Kent.

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All those that know her love and support Judy, including fellow participant, Susan Grasdahl.

“Judy is amazing, we are so lucky to have her at Camp! Each year brings change and some challenges to be met, Judy always meets it with “we got this” and that approach has become our motto!  Judy leads with kindness, enthusiasm, dedication, hard work and of course her quick wit! Be it rain , heat , wind, concerts, bike races or sprinklers going off at dawn… no worries, Judy’s got this! She is an inspiration to us all!”

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Her sister in law, Maryann O’Donnell, echoes that praise! She says Judy has been a dedicated 3-Dayer since 2002.

“She was preparing to celebrate her 50th birthday and wanted to do something to celebrate her 50 years of being relatively healthy. She called me with the idea of us walking the 3-Day in Seattle. We prepared by raising money, we trained on separate coasts (since I live in Virginia) and we anxiously arrived with two water bottles in tow, for that first event. What an emotional roller-coaster that was for both of us!

“We each brought different strengths and personalities to that walk. I am the emotional one, often high strung but always with a smile on my face. Judy …is an accountant…she sees an issue…analyzes it…and executes a solution. One could say she perseveres until the job is complete, a trait that got us through that first 60 miles and has continued with her throughout the next 15 plus events.

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O’Donnell continues, “Judy was proud to be a part of the 3-Day when Komen took over the event. She first worked on the Food Service crew, then quickly became the Food Service captain until a few years ago, when she became the Camp senior captain. In the off season, she fundraised, helped others with training walks, sewed chef hats, sewed pink aprons, helped organize people to get involved and even badgered her high school friends to fly from California to be on her crew. She has gone above and beyond what she had wanted to accomplish on that first walk in 2002. I am thrilled to be a part of this recognition of her accomplishments for the 3-Day. I know she is really a very humble person who doesn’t want to be in the limelight, but is so deserving of this award.”

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After all that praise, we had to hear from Judy herself! When we asked her these questions, she didn’t know she would soon be selected as our winner!

What was your inspiration to do your first 3-Day?

I was prodded into doing the event in 2002 (then with Avon) by my sister-in-law Maryann O’Donnell, who also still works on the crew. I was turning 50 years old and needed a physical challenge. Also, it was the time in my life to start “giving back.” Breast cancer poses such a threat to women as we get older and I wanted to get out in front of it doing my part to make diagnosis, treatment and survival rates better.

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What has brought you back to the 3-Day year after year?

I absolutely love the camaraderie that exists among the new and veteran crew members. We all want to help the walkers have the best experience ever.

What is the secret to your 3-Day fundraising success?

The most important thing about fundraising is: “Don’t be afraid to ask everyone and anyone!” Over the years, I have heard so many stories from walkers about how pleasantly surprised they were by the support they received when they just had the courage to ask for donations.

What is your best advice to anyone walking the 3-Day?

Train, train, train! Make sure you train carrying a full water bottle either in a waist of back pack. Make sure you take a long walk wearing the clothes you plan on wearing on event so you can check for chafing, wicking, etc. Also, please make sure you have the shoes and socks that work best for your feet.

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What are 3 fun facts about you?

  1. This year our family will have 3 generations on event. My niece, Liz Matthews, is captain of Traffic control and her daughter, Zoey, is serving with the Youth Corps
  2. My husband and I make our own wine and beer as a hobby, and we work at a winery in Woodinville.
  3. I still use a “dumb” phone – I can only talk and text with my phone!

What are the most important lessons you’ve learned on the 3-Day?

  1. No matter tired I am, the walkers are even more tired.
  2. Always be ready and available to listen. It may be a walker with a problem or complaint (or maybe even a rave review), a crew member with a question or a staff member with a request. Listen carefully and then do your best to solve the problem.
  3. For Seattle, always bring rain gear.

 

Congratulations to the 2017 Philadelphia 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner

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For the 2017 Susan G. Komen 3-Day® season, we’re honored to be featuring the Local Impact Award. This award is being given to participants who have been instrumental in strengthening the 3-Day® community throughout the year. Local Impact Award honorees have gone above and beyond in their efforts leading training walks, attending 3-Day community events. They have also supported the 3-Day staff year-round at meet-ups and workshops, and in general, been making a difference by building lasting relationships and showing commitment to the 3-Day in all they do.

Please join us in congratulating the 2017 Philadelphia 3-Day Local Impact Award Winner, Stephanie Hartman.

This is her 7th year as Captain of the Youth Corps and 12th year participating in the 3Day. She has raised more than $1,400 this year!

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Where does she get all her 3-Day spirit? Let’s hear from Steph! When we asked her these questions, she didn’t know she would soon be selected as our winner!

What was your inspiration to do your first 3-Day?

I began participating in the 3-Day in memory of my mother.  I have been involved with the Race for the Cure since I was 8 years old (in Philadelphia, in Pittsburgh during college, and recently DC).  When I heard about the 3Day, I knew it was a way for me to do more and honor my mother’s death.

My mother was diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer at the age of 33. She had a mastectomy after a mass was found.  She was 2 months pregnant with me. Further scans showed the cancer had spread throughout her body including her vertebrae, skull, and sternum.  She began chemotherapy when she was 10.5 weeks pregnant.  At 13 weeks pregnant, she had her ovaries removed after metastatic tumor deposits were found. She continued treatment for the duration of the pregnancy.  I was born premature but healthy.

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At the young age of 36, my mother’s battle with breast cancer ended.  I was only 2 years old.  My mother left behind her loving husband (my father) and 6 children (ages 2-16).

My first inspiration was for my mother, my sisters, my nieces, and myself.

What has brought you back to the 3-Day year after year?

I have many reasons for coming back year after year. Obviously, my initial reasons: to honor my mother and because I don’t believe any child should grow up without a mother, but as I have participated over the past 11 years, I have gained more and more reasons.

The 3-Day has brought me a 2nd family. When I first started the 3-Day, I thought breast cancer automatically meant death. I was afraid for myself and my family, and thought it was an inevitable future. Because I was so young when my mother died, I didn’t see her struggles or her strength as she went through treatment and still raised my siblings and I. Through the 3-Day, I have met so many strong survivors and fighters and I have been touched by so many stories.

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My most recent reason is my 6-year-old family! 😉 I became involved with the youth corps in 2011, the inaugural year in Philly.  Growing up without a mother, I immediately wanted to be involved with the youth corps to help support youth.  Through the youth, we have developed a very close knit family.  Since 2011, we have had 96 different yc members in Philadelphia.  Growing up, we never talked about my mom’s cancer or death.  I often felt alone in the grief of the loss.  I never want any of these youths to feel alone.  I keep in contact with every member.  We have reunions and get-togethers every year. These youths and their families keep me coming back year after year.  I have made bonds with the families, and have added more and more reasons to my list of fighters, survivors, and angels.

Of these 96 youth, 20 have walked AT LEAST 1 event, 7 have crewed including 5 that have served as leaders on the youth corps, and a handful that have come to camp to volunteer as camp angels.

What is the secret to your 3-Day fundraising success?

I have been very fortunate to have family and friends support me through donations over the past 11 years. Most of my most successful have been group fundraisers with the youth corps. We have held coin drops, beef and beers, set up tables at craft fairs, and most recently have helped to run a baseball invitational.  My nephews are members of a travel team in Towamencin, PA. The Towamencin Travel Baseball teams host a breast cancer invitational to raise money for the cause. Over the past few years, the youth corps has been very fortunate to help at the event by gathering raffle baskets before the event and by selling raffle tickets, 50/50 tickets, and merchandise at the event.

As a team, we surpassed the $150,000-mark last year. The youth corps has been very creative with their fundraising. They have organized triathlons, bike races, dance classes, self-defense classes, and in school fundraisers.

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What is your best advice to anyone walking the 3-Day? 

Before event: Train. Train. Then train some more.  (I have not trained for any of my walks. I said I was going to and have advised other too, but “I’m a runner so I don’t have to.” Haha… Quickly did I learn that running and walking are not the same thing at all!)

On event: Have fun! You have already done the hard part. You have already raised over $2300…. This weekend is a celebration! Make lots of connections with others. Talk to them – tell them your story and ask for their story. Don’t hurt yourself trying to do all 60 if your body needs a break. Crossing the finish line on Day 3 is amazing – so pace yourself and enjoy the weekend! You need to be able to walk and function at work on Monday.

After event: 1- Sign up again! J 2- Keep in touch with those you connected with. We are all family!

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What’s a fun fact about you?

It may come as a surprise, but I am a demi-god molded from clay and given life by Zeus. That’s right, I am WONDER WOMAN!

Okay… so maybe I’m not Wonder Woman but I do like to think I have boundless energy and am able to save the world.

All of my favorite ‘jobs’ involve children.  Aside from my day job of inspiring and teaching middle schoolers in Philly or past jobs of social work or nannying, I constantly surround myself with children.  I am the proud aunt of 7 nephews and 3 nieces (2 of whom live in Hawaii).  You can often find me cheering them on while they play various sports, building LEGOs, or acting like a kid on some crazy adventure.

My newest amazing adventures have come at the hands of a smart and silly 4-year-old. I have been very lucky to have found a new ‘job’ in helping the love of my life raise his beautiful daughter.  (Yes, I now know every word to every song in Moana…)

It’s no wonder that I jumped at the opportunity to captain the youth corps in 2011! So, maybe I’m not Wonder Woman, but I think spending my time with all the kids in my life make my life even more special than being a demi-god.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned on the 3-Day?

Not to be afraid to open. Not to be afraid to accept help (I’m still not good at number at this!), and – We are family!

Open up: I have met so many amazing people of the years that I have come to know as family. I am one to want to help others and to hear other’s stories. I have learned to open up more and have enjoyed talking about my mother and my initial reason for doing the 3-Day.

Accept help: I am still learning. As a walker, in both Philly and Michigan, the lovely crew have made sure that I care for myself even when I have been trying to help others. J As YC Captain, I luckily have amazing leaders (and youth) on my team that have made sure I take care of myself on event.

We are family: I have met some amazing people over the years. Life is not always a straight path that can be planned for. It is often winding with crazy ups and downs, and some plateaus in between. We are a family. These amazing people you have met will be there for you through the good and bad, and you will be there for them.

On behalf of all of us walking, crewing, and supporting the Susan G. Komen 3-Day, thank you Steph. We can’t wait to see all your pink 3-Day spirit on future events!