WASHINGTON – The Catholic University of America assistant softball coach Tori Marcavage is not taking the summer to vacation. The 2015 Catholic graduate has linked up with the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults and is currently midway through a 49-day, 4,000-plus mile, coast-to-coast trek in order to raise awareness and help those in need along the way.
The undertaking is to bring awareness to over 700,000 young adults who are suffering from cancer while Marcavage and her running mates make stops to help those affected as they make their way cross-country.
"I chose to do this because almost everyone has a connection to the cancer community. I wanted to be a part of something bigger than myself," said Marcavage. "Every person and kind gesture we have encountered along the way reinforces what we are doing and made me realize every mile really does matter."
Marcavage is one of 28 young runners in her group to make the trek from San Francisco to Brooklyn.
Done in pairs, each runner takes two-mile stretches of road as the bus drops off the next two a couple miles down the road. This is done continuously and like a machine until they reach one of their 29 rest areas. Two participants who aren't running for the day are in charge of going to the host town to ask for donations and set up for the night.
Each morning the group has a dedication circle that is made up of a chant with their left hand up to signify that they are getting support and their right hand up to show that they are giving support.
"Cancer is a disease that every family has a connection to. Cancer affected my family in 1997. Both my Pop Pop and Uncle Kip passed away from cancer a couple of months apart," said Marcavage. "I truly believe everyone needs to stand up, do their part, and help fight cancer in any way they can."
In addition to the impressive run, Marcavage and her group are stopping at numerous hospitals and research centers including the Buffett Cancer Center in Omaha, Neb., the Faith Center in Lakeview, Ore.
The group left from San Francisco, Calif., on June 18th and has made stops in Yuba City, Corning, and Burney, Calif., before getting to Lakeview. Their next leg took them to Burns, Vale and Boise, Idaho. From there, the group's route goes through Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York. The final destination is New York City on Saturday, Aug. 5.
ABOUT 2017 4K FOR CANCER
2017 marks the 16th year of the 4K for Cancer sending young adults on journeys across the country in an effort to inspire hope and unite communities in the fight against cancer. The 4K for Cancer is a program of The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults (UCF). Interested in joining the fight? Apply to be a rider or runner at www.4kforcancer.org!
Over 70,000 young adults are diagnosed with cancer every year. Young adults (ages 15-39) face a variety of unique challenges with a cancer diagnosis including fertility preservation, social isolation, lack of insurance, delayed diagnosis, and more.
The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults changes lives by creating a community of support for young adults, and their loved ones, impacted by cancer. With your support, the Ulman Cancer Fund is able to provide free support services and resources for the young adult cancer community including:
Cancer to 5K - a 12-week training program designed to introduce or reintroduce cancer survivors to physical activity.
Patient Navigation - a free program (onsite at cancer centers and remotely through our office) that ensures no young adult ever faces cancer alone. We provide one-on-one support & resources to young adults and their families to help them manage the cancer experience and long-term cancer survival.
Scholarships - a financial assistance program to help young adults continue their education after being affected by cancer through their own diagnosis or the diagnosis of a loved one.
UCF House - This year UCF broke ground on a "home away from home" to provide free housing for young adult cancer patients, and their caregivers, in East Baltimore.
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