Beaufort News

3-day breast cancer walk/run planned for Hilton Head

In this file photo, Hilton Head Island's Michael Sigler, right, laughs as wife Shirley Sigler, second from right, is complimented on her outfit while picking up her registration packet at the kickoff party for LoCo Motion, a three-day breast cancer walk and run.
In this file photo, Hilton Head Island's Michael Sigler, right, laughs as wife Shirley Sigler, second from right, is complimented on her outfit while picking up her registration packet at the kickoff party for LoCo Motion, a three-day breast cancer walk and run. Sarah Welliver

Get ready for a sea of pink at the beach.

LoCo Motion, organized by Carolina Cups -- a non-profit breast cancer foundation -- runs today through Sunday.

In its second year, the event has evolved from a 30-mile walk/run to fight breast cancer into a weekend of festivities with new before and after parties to raise money to battle the disease.

Proceeds benefit several local and regional cancer organizations, including the Keyserling Cancer Center in Port Royal, the Hollings Cancer Center in Charleston and Beaufort Jasper Hampton Comprehensive Health Services.

More than 600 have signed up for the local event, nearly double last year's crowd of 325. Organizers hope to raise about $125,000, said Carolina Cups president Laura Morgan.

"We want to turn this into the signature event, not just for the Lowcountry, but South Carolina," she said.

Diane Prazma, 55, flew in from Granite City, Ill., to join longtime friend and breast cancer survivor Donna Myers, 55, and mutual friend Bill Mahoney, 63, both of Sun City.

Myers was diagnosed in November 2008. She had recently won a triathlon with her husband, who would succumb to cancer months after his wife finished treatment.

"This has been an opportunity for me to get the word out," Myers said, "not just about breast cancer but cancer in general. It can happen to anyone at any time. It's about living life to its fullest. ... Both my husband and I were stricken with cancer, and he's gone, but I'm here to live on and let everyone know: Don't waste time."

For Hilton Head resident Kim Hall, 39, the event marks the beginning and end of her own tumultuous battle with breast cancer.

She was diagnosed three weeks before last year's event, and could only watch as her children, Spencer, 9, and Abigail, 11, crossed the finish line to show their support.

This year, she'll cross it herself in support of other cancer patients, along with "The Boob Brigade" of 30 friends and family members.

"One year ago today I was having a double-mastectomy, and am now cancer-free," she said Thursday. "It is coming full circle for me."

Hall said she began giving herself a breast exam at 30. At 31, she found a non-cancerous cyst. At 38, she found a tumor.

Surgeons would later tell her she had been living with the cancer for about a year. Had she not caught it in the early stage, the results could have been fatal, she said.

"I was 38 with no family history. You think that you're immune to those things, and no one truly is," she said. "Unless we raise awareness and get the word out there about prevention and screening, people will continue to want to believe they are immune. ... Women 25 to 75 should get a mammogram. Don't wait until it's too late."

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