NUTLEY, NJ — Nutley staged its 12th annual Relay for Life on Friday, May 18. The event was originally scheduled for DeMuro Park, but the threat of inclement weather moved the festivities indoors to the Nutley Parks and Recreation Building. It did not rain, but no matter.
The crowd inside the building was everywhere enthusiastic and cheerful. But most importantly, survivors openly discussed the once taboo subject of cancer. And they came organized. Wearing purple shirts, some were accompanied by a family member wearing a sash across their shoulder designating them as a caregiver. It was this openness by survivors which was moving.
It represented a confrontation — a direct, communal response to a disease — that lifted a shroud from a killer which only benefited from fear, secrecy and shame.
In addition to the traditional opening ceremony, the survivor/caregiver walk, the luminaria ceremony for survivors and those whose lives were taken by cancer, and the closing ceremony, the 2018 Nutley Relay for Life had an added feature. It was the “Walking in Faith Fashion Show.” Conceived by an event organizer, Tammi Trible, survivors, family members and “Relay” volunteers participated in the. It was dedicated to Trible’s husband, Wayne Thomas Trible, who lost his battle against the disease. Trible was assisted by Dayna Hess and Heather Soto in coordinating the entire 2018 event.
Addressing the crowd during the opening ceremony, Nutley Commissioner Mauro Tucci said 345 participants were at the event, including 41 survivors. Since its inception, he said the Nutley Relay for Life had raised $1.2 million in donations for the American Cancer Society. More than $71,000, and counting, has been donated this year.
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