AP NEWS

Rain doesn’t stop Breast Cancer Awareness event at Career & Technology Center

October 27, 2018 GMT

GRANITEVILLE — The weather didn’t cooperate with the organizers of the sixth annual Breast Cancer Awareness Walk at the Aiken County Career & Technology Center on Friday.

Steady rain and cool temperatures weren’t what health science technology teacher Teresa Hayden and her students were hoping for when they planned this year’s edition of event.

Traditionally, it has been held outdoors.

“We knew the bad weather was coming in,” Hayden said. “I talked to my students about it, and we had two choices. We could hit the pause button and cancel or reschedule, or we could go on. Individuals with breast cancer don’t get to hit the pause button. They don’t get to delay it. So that’s why decided we were going on with it today.”

Because of the wet conditions, the focus shifted from the usual stroll around the campus to other activities that could be offered in the Career & Technology Center’s rooms and hallways.

The school’s students in other programs, staff members and visitors were invited to participate. They paid $2 apiece to play with hula hoops and a giant inflatable bowling set. They also could enjoy a game of wall ball, dance to loud music, sign a banner with an inspirational message and get their faces painted.

There were snacks for sale and an information table with brochures.

The students of the Career & Technology Center’s fashion design teacher Jean Pesce supported the effort by making and selling tie-dyed T-shirts and bracelets, Hayden said.

Students from Langley-Bath-Clearwater Middle School, who are members of an organization for future health professionals, were among the attendees.

The money raised will be donated to CanHope, a nonprofit that provides assistance to cancer patients in Aiken, Edgefield, Allendale and Barnwell counties.

Joining health science technology student Kaitny Stroman at the Breast Cancer Walk were her mother, Bridgett Stroman, and her grandmother, Katie Evans.

Bridgett and Evans are breast cancer survivors.

“When I came here to register my daughter, Mrs. Hayden told me about this event,” Bridgett said. “When I shared with her that I was a breast cancer survivor, she was like, ‘Please come and support us on that day. We would like to honor you.’ That’s why we’re here.”

Bridgett and Evans both were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006.

“We’re doing good,” Bridgett said. “I’m thankful that they provide this opportunity here for kids to support the cause and to bring awareness to it (breast cancer). With both of us having breast cancer, it’s very possible my daughter will get it, too, but of course, we pray that it won’t happen. I tell her to be aware of her body and to do the checks.”

Kaitny, a sophomore who is planning to pursue a career in pharmacy or psychology, was enjoying being with her mother and grandmother at a school event.

“Because of what they went through, I’m so glad to have this time with them,” she said. “I know not everybody is so lucky.”