Belchertown High School hosts virtual Relay for Life

Hampshire County

BELCHERTOWN, Mass. (WWLP) – Traditionally, Relay for Life events raising money for cancer research begins with what’s called the survivor’s lap.

When cancer survivors and their caregivers walk the first lap, they’re to be followed by teams of supporters at the Belchertown High School athletic field. But Saturday evening’s Relay for Life became a virtual event, with supporters walking that lap with their pictures.

22News spoke with one organizer who told us, supporters raised money through an elaborate system of more isolated support.

“We have a magic lady in a booth in Springfield, I believe she’s running this from there for us and she’s at the controls,” Rebecca Pease said. “We’re able to do a survival lap and come around our survivors with us.”

For Betty Jo Brian, the relay for life has great meaning, her son is a cancer survivor.

“Today, you get to be with people who understand that journey and they can help you in a way you can’t get from any other service,” Brian told 22News. “It’s a place I get a lot of feeling and support and camaraderie.”

The pandemic may have altered the attendance for this year’s relay for life, but the goal remains unhinged, to raise money necessary to one day find a cure for cancer.

Despite this weekend’s Relay for Life in Belchertown being a virtual event, they raised $3,000 for cancer research.

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