More than 1,000 attend Breast Cancer Awareness Walk in Americus - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

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More than 1,000 attend Breast Cancer Awareness Walk in Americus

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Walkers paint Forsyth Street pink in Americus Walkers paint Forsyth Street pink in Americus
Southland Academy JV cheerleaders perform during the pre-walk ceremony Southland Academy JV cheerleaders perform during the pre-walk ceremony
Breast cancer survivors Sharon Tarver and Deatrice Harris lead fellow survivors Breast cancer survivors Sharon Tarver and Deatrice Harris lead fellow survivors
AMERICUS, Ga. -

Phoebe Sumter set a goal of 1,000 for its 10th Annual Breast Cancer Awareness Walk, and the people of Southwest Georgia responded in a big way.

More than 1,000 people descended upon Lenny's Farmer's Market in downtown Americus in support of Breast Cancer Awareness, making this the largest walk in the event's 10-year history.

The event began with a welcome by Phoebe Sumter Interim CEO Laurie Hair and a prayer by hospital chaplain Wendy Joyner-Peacock. Keynote speaker Kristin T. Collier, MD (General Surgery) spoke to the crowd about the importance of self-exams and mammograms, and encouraged those in attendance to pay close attention to their bodies because early detection could save lives.

Also on hand was TV and radio personality Ebony Steele, best known for co-host role on the syndicated Rickey Smiley Radio Morning Show.  Steele, a breast cancer survivor, told her story about how she was diagnosed and wanted to encourage everyone to keep fighting and to help those who are going through the struggle with breast cancer.

The walkers had their choice of three routes through downtown Americus, creating a wave of pink as far as the eye could see.

"We started this walk 10 years ago as a way to bring attention to breast cancer, which affects 1 out of 8 women in America and kills more than 40,000 women each year," said Marcus Johnson with Phoebe Sumter.  "We want women, and men, to be aware of their bodies and if they feel anything is wrong to go to their physician and get it checked out.  One day, we hope to not have to do this walk, but as long as breast cancer is among us we will be out here in support of the survivors and their families, as well remember those who lost their fight to this awful disease."

Johnson said that this event would not have been possible without the support of the local organizations and volunteers.

For more information on mammograms and overall breast health, please call (229) 924-6011.

Jessi Mitchell

Jessi joined the WRBL news team in October 2012 after working as a freelance production assistant for MTV Networks in Los Angeles.
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