Miracles can happen.
Myeloma is a rare form of cancer that took a back seat on Saturday, October 5 when more than 450 runners/walkers joined together at the "Miracles for Myeloma" race to raise money and awareness for research for this deadly disease.
Sheree Pask, a teacher at the Presbyterian Church in Westfield’s Nursery School and Westfield resident Gina Kemm, the organizers of the event, were amazed at the turn out. “We can’t thank the community enough for coming out to help us raise awareness of myeloma,” Mrs. Pask said. “The ALJ Key Club, under the direction of adviser Ellen Zamboni, was so helpful in setting up the memorial path and running registration. We couldn’t have done it without those 36 high school student volunteers!”
Gold sponsors of the event that took place in Oak Ridge Park
in Clark were two pharmaceutical companies – Celgene and Millennium. Mile marker sponsors included Clark Kiwanis
Club, Robert Wood Johnson Wellness and Fitness Center in Scotch Plains, ProCare
Rehabilitation Center in Clark and Weiland Auto Coach in Linden.
Colorful balloon trees and individual balloons for the remembrance pathway were donated by the Grab Bag in Clark. “I was especially impressed with the donated balloons,” Mrs. Pask said at a recent Clark Kiwanis meeting. “It didn’t dawn on me that the owner of the Grab Bag had to get up at 4 a.m. to get all of the balloons blown up and delivered to us by 7:30. That was truly above and beyond what we had hoped for!”
Speakers for the race included multiple myeloma oncologist from the Cancer Institute of New Brunswick, NJ Dr. Mecide Gharibo, nurse practitioner Ann McNeil from John Theurer Cancer Center at Hackensack University Medical Center and Suzanne Battaglia, Member Events Representative from IMF, the International Myeloma Foundation.
Donations can still be made through the end of the month online at the IMF website or sent via mail to International Myeloma Foundation, 12650 Riverside Dr., Suite 206, North Hollywood, CA 91607. Memo line of the check should mention “Miracles for Myeloma,” with attention Suzanne Battaglia.