CEDAR RAPIDS – With another strong Sunday morning turnout, The Especially For You Race Against Breast Cancer brought more than 15,000 people to the downtown streets for the annual 5k race, walk, and one-mile family walk took place at through Mercy Medical Center.
The race's mission is to fund free breast cancer screenings and other support services for people who may not be able to afford them. This year, participants raised more than $376,000. Last year's proceeds helped 629 people receive medical and support services throughout Linn County. The community joined together in colors of pink and green to raise the funds for women or men in need and educate people on the importance of early detection.
"Mine was caught with a mammogram and that was in the early stages and that was seven years ago," stated Karen Woeste a breast cancer survivor.
Out of the 15, 250 people that registered, race organizers report 598 were cancer survivors.
"Breast cancer affects a lot of different people so it's very nice today to see all the people come out and support that cause," said Candace Mckeeyer the race coordinator. Race leaders said that people from 31 different states and 427 different cities in the U.S. laced up their shoes for the event. The oldest female participant was Garde Ihde at 98 years old, and the oldest male was Tom Kaut at 89 years old.
General Mills and Mercy Medical Center are co-founders of the race.
The Especially For You Race Against Breast Cancer has been fundraising for 22 years.