1,300 participate in Relay for Life

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West Hazel Dell — Some 1,300 participants turned out to honor 340 cancer survivors and 185 caregivers during the 23rd Annual Vancouver Relay For Life. More than 150 teams raised $232,000 for the American Cancer Society on July 16-17. The relay walk, at Columbia River High School, went for 24 hours and represented a day in the life of a cancer patient. After sundown, about 3,000 luminarias were lit during a ceremony in memory of loved ones who have died. This year organizers focused on re-establishing a sense of community during the event and feel they succeeded, said Angela Dockum, relay co-chairwoman. As the sun rose, during the Fight Back Ceremony, remaining participants let loose 200 balloons and made pledges to take action against the disease.