Relay for Life raises $50,000 for cancer research

(Editor's note: An error in this story was corrected April 11, 2010.)

More than 900 people walked all night Friday to help fight a disease that kills thousands of South Carolinians every year.

From 7 p.m. Friday to 7 a.m. Saturday, participants walked and danced around the track at Beaufort Middle School as part of the American Cancer Society Relay for Life. Participants at the annual all-night walks raise money for cancer research by collecting donations before the event, which is in its 26th year nationally.

"This year really brought back the spirit of the Beaufort relay," said event organizer Lesa Allen-Gaither.

Allen-Gaither said the event's 40 registered teams -- which included 100 cancer survivors -- had raised $50,000 for cancer research as of Saturday.

Friday's event is the first in a string of relays throughout Beaufort County over the next three months.

Relays on Hilton Head Island and in Bluffton are scheduled for May 7 and May 14, respectively.

A Jasper County relay will be held June 12 at the Coastal Carolina Medical Center in Hardeeville, organizers say.