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home : local news : local news

10/3/2012 3:35:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
Great Strides Walk set for Oct. 21 at VU
VINCENNES - More than 10 million Americans are unknowing, symptomless carriers of the defective cystic fibrosis gene.

Cystic fibrosis is a life-threatening genetic disease, which affects the lungs and digestive system. The disease occurs in 1 of every 3,500 live births of all Americans and about 1,000 new cases of CF are diagnosed each year.

Good Samaritan Hospital Respiratory Care Department is taking steps to cure cystic fibrosis by organizing a Great Strides walk in Vincennes. The Great Strides walk will be Oct. 21 on the Vincennes University Track. Registration for the walk begins at noon (EDT) and the walk kicks off at 1 p.m.

Great Strides is the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation's largest and most successful fund-raising event. Across the country, tens of thousands co-workers, clubs and organizations, friends and families come together each year as one community for one cause - to help find a cure for cystic fibrosis. Walk day is a fun, family-oriented celebration that includes a healthy 5K, food, live music and a silent auction.

Last year a local family affected by cystic fibrosis hosted a Great Strides walk in Vincennes and raised $10,000. This year Good Samaritan Hospital's Respiratory Care Department is taking over heading up this walk for the local area.

The walk will be a tri-county walk, consisting of walkers from Knox and Daviess counties in Indiana and Lawrence County, Illinois. "The reason we are making this a tri-county walk is because a majority of our cystic fibrosis patients are coming from these three counties," Tammy Howell, a GSH respiratory therapist, stated.

There are several ways to participate in this year's Great Strides walk - raise money and register as a walker; become a sponsor; sign up as a pin-up partner, or volunteer to help with the event. Howell said walkers raise funds and can walk as an individual or as part of a family, corporate or club team. Companies, businesses and individuals can support Great Strides by becoming a local sponsor. Area retailers can sign up to sell Great Strides pin-ups for $1 to support the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Wrist bands can also be sold by retail stores or teams. Volunteers are needed to help with walk day activities and logistics.

"We invite everyone to form a team or come out and walk as an individual to support the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation," said Howell. "Nearly 90 cents of every dollar of foundation revenue goes to support vital cystic fibrosis research, medical and education programs.

Currently there is no cure for cystic fibrosis so the research is so important."

Howell said the committee for this year's walk has set a goal to raise at least $5,000. Those who want to register an individual walker, form a team, sponsor the event, become a pin-up partner or volunteer can call 812-885-3215.


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