Relay for Life canceled in Troy: Official says event 'will not be happening this year'
The Western Bradford County Relay for Life in Troy is canceled this year.
Theresa Ledney, senior manager with Relay For Life East Central Division, said the event "will not be happening this year."
"We are encouraging teams from that event to participate in either the Relay For Life of Tioga County or the Relay For Life of Wyalusing," she said.
While Ledney did not comment as to the reason for discontinuing the event, Shelley Walcheski, who has been active in the Troy Relay for a number of years, said that not enough people were getting involved in the organizing of the Relay, which has been held each year at Alparon Park in Troy. Last year, it raised $23,800 in the fight against cancer.
"We just didn't have a committee and we couldn't pull enough people together to have a planning committee," she said.
Walcheski said participation in this aspect of the Relay has been falling over the years.
Last year, she said, three or four people took part in the planning, and only two stepped forward to serve on the planning committee for what would have been the 2014 Relay.
"I'm sad that it's not happening this year," she commented. She was hopeful that another group of people could "pull it back together" in the future.
She also said there was turnover in the American Cancer Society (ACS) staffing for the Relay.
In the beginning, the same person from the ACS was involved with the Relay in Troy year after year, but she said that hasn't been the case for the last couple years. She noted that there have been three or four different ACS representatives.
"The Relay benefits a lot of community programs and now we're down to one for Bradford County," Walcheski said.
She said a lot of people are disappointed about the Relay being discontinued.
Walcheski said she and a friend will try to at least attend the Wyalusing Relay for Life this year.
She said it's a big loss for the Troy community.
In a previous interview, Theresa Miller, who was a community volunteer involvement director for the ACS, said the money raised through the Relay helps fund a lot of the local programs that the ACS offers to Bradford County residents, and the money also goes toward research.
"It pulls everybody together," Walcheski said. "It recognizes survivors and celebrates their lives, and recognizes those who have passed and lost the battle with cancer."
The cancellation of the Troy Relay comes on the heels of a reduction in the length of last year's event.
Last year, the Relay was shorter than its usual 24 hours, and was held from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The ACS describes the Relay For Life as "a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to Celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, Remember loved ones lost, and Fight Back against the disease."
Each year, more than 4 million people in over 20 countries take part in this global phenomenon and raise much-needed funds and awareness to save lives from cancer, according to the ACS.
Eric Hrin can be reached at (570) 297-5251; email: firstname.lastname@example.org