Relay for Life 2002 launched
READY FOR RELAY Susan Hawkins, left, and Tena Picard take down last year's Relay for Life sponsor sign and put up this year's at the SuperStop office. Photo by Carisa McCain / The Meridian Star
By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
March 7, 2002
Judy Hammack has seen Relay for Life grow by leaps and bounds since its beginning in Lauderdale County in 1995.
Hammack was Relay chairman for the first three years of the event. She began volunteering with the American Cancer Society more than 20 years ago. This year she is chairman of the competitions committee.
Relay for Life is the American Cancer Society's largest fund-raising effort nationwide. The campaign in Meridian ends with an all-night gathering at Meridian High School's Ray Stadium that includes family-oriented events and competition and is open to the public. Money raised by Relay for Life teams is used to fund services for cancer patients and their families, programs on cancer prevention and cancer research.
Organizers of Relay for Life have set June 7-8 for this year's event at Ray Stadium.
Last year's Relay for Life campaign raised $400,000 for the American Cancer Society and it was the fourth year in a row that Meridian was recognized on the national level for its efforts. In 2001 Lauderdale County Relay for Life was ranked number one in the nation for per-capita giving in its population category of 75,000-100,000.
Becky Vance, retired employee of SuperStop, was introduced at the press conference as the person who will serve as Relay chairman next year.
Committee chairpersons on this year's Relay Committee are: Brenda Compton, team recruitment; Anthony Wilson and Tim Putnam, sponsorship; Dee VanDevender, survivors; Diane Griffin, luminaries; Zula Kimbrell, activities; Judy Hammack, competitions; Linda Todd, advocacy; Tim Miller, logistics; Sandi Warren, registration; Cynthia Touchton, bank night; Joel Johnson, volleyball; Cathy Feltenstein, prizes; and Sue Gruno, cancer smart shop.
Sponsors for this year's Relay for Life include: A&B Electric Co., Long Wholesale, Meridian Oncology Associates, Mississippi Power Company, The Mitchell Companies, Structural Steel Services, Inc., and SuperStop. In-kind media sponsors include: The Meridian Star, B-93 The Buzz, Clear Channel Communications, Radio People (New South Communications) and radio stations WMOX and WZKR. Leading Edges Advertising was named agency of record by the Relay Committee and is also a media sponsor.
For more information on how to join or form a Relay for Life team, call Brenda Compton at 693-2431. To purchase luminaries in honor of, or in memory of, a loved one, call Diane Griffin at 681-4889. Luminaries cost $10 each.