Relay For Life raises $36,157

The family of Esther Settle leads the Survivor Lap as part of the opening ceremony. Photo by Michelle Schwartz.

By Tim Grove
Special to the Rappahannock News
The Rappahannock Relay For Life on May 19 was an especially emotional event this year with the passing of Ester Settle just days before.

Ester was considered the mother of Relay For Life in Rappahannock County. She was one of its founders and a dedicated volunteer for the Reach to Recovery program for women with breast cancer. She spoke of the need to get young people involved in Relay and to take roles on the committee. A great collection of veteran committee members helped out and offered their expertise and input in planning the event.

That mix of involvement has helped the annual American Cancer Society Relay For Life raise $36,157 so far this year to support the Society’s mission.

The 128 participants in this year’s walk were exhausted but happy after the walk at Rappahannock County Elementary School.

The number of sponsors, teams, participants and survivors participating in the event all increased this year. The relay will accept donations until mid-August. It needs just under $1,800 to reach the amount that was raised last year.

“A big thank you to the committee, team captains, participants, survivors, sponsors and the community, through their hard work in preparing for the event, and by spending hours walking for the cause, Rappahannock County residents certainly did their part to help the American Cancer Society create a world with less cancer and more birthdays,” said Tim Grove, American Cancer Society senior community manager, for Rappahannock County Relay For Life.

At the end of the survivor lap, cancer survivors, families and their caregivers release their purple and white balloons. Photo by Michelle Schwartz.

The top individual fundraiser was Gail Timbers, who collected $3,489.58 in donations. The top fundraising team was Melvin’s Crusaders, led by Ellen Timbers, which raised $8,378. The campsite award went to The Extreme Team for a Hawaiian theme.

More than 300 people, represented by 20 teams, participated in this year’s Relay event. The teams were comprised of area families, faith-based groups, businesses, clubs and other organizations.

To learn more about Relay For Life in Rappahannock County and to keep updated on the event’s happenings, visit or call 540-667-2315. More information about the American Cancer Society and its efforts in the fight against cancer can be obtained by calling 1-800-227-2345 or by visiting

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