Luminaria ceremonies are typically as a sign of remembrance and hope. It is a way to honor cancer survivors, as well as those who have lost their battle.
Relay for Life in Ascension was held on Saturday, March 23.
What is Relay for Life? They are cancer fundraising events to help communities attack cancer. It is the American Cancer Societies signature fundraiser. When you're a part of Relay for Life, you're joining forces with millions of people worldwide.
The event began at 3 p.m. and ended at 10 p.m. At 5:30 p.m., there was a balloon release. Balloons could be purchased at the event for a donation of one dollar. At 7:30 p.m., there was a luminaria ceremony.
Luminaria ceremonies are typically as a sign of remembrance and hope. It is a way to honor cancer survivors, as well as those who have lost their battle. Luminaries were ten dollars and served as the line for the track that attendees walked around.
Survivors, battlers, and loved ones honoring the ones they have lost were supporting the cause to raise money for the American Cancer Society. Senator Bill Cassidy was also present as the guest speaker.
"Every one of us knows someone who has cancer. You're walking in memory of those who have walked before us, as well as raising money for cancer services to help continue the fight against cancer," Cassidy said.
One survivor, Daniel Boudreaux, had his life changed forever on June 20, 2017. He was diagnosed with Lymphocytic Leukemia, which is a cancer of the blood and bone marrow that affects white blood cells.
"I was told that without chemo, I had about two months to live. That was a lot to take in, so shortly after I began chemo at Our Lady of the Lake Hospital. Ultimately, I needed a stem cell transplant to save my life," Boudreaux said. "I have eight siblings, and three came back as a match. However, my identical twin was the perfect match. I thank him for saving my life."
On October 14, 2017, Boudreaux had received the stem cell transplant, and now he is a survivor. At the Relay for Life last year, Boudreaux notes that he was walking around the track with a cane and could barely finish. This year, there was no stopping him.
"Six weeks ago, I finally returned to work. I was out for twenty-two months, so it's definitely an adjustment. Today, though, I am giving back and celebrating surviving and honoring those who weren't able to win the fight," Boudreaux said.
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