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By Beverly Cabral, Chairperson Placencia BTIA
It has been a tradition these last few years to start off the Placencia Lobsterfest weekend with the very early morning Battle Cancer Walk to the commendable efforts of Raquel Battle, daughter of Mr. Edlin Leslie Sr., cancer victim, and Miss Sonia Leslie, to support the development of the Belize Cancer Center in Dangriga.
I am an early morning riser, but NOT an early morning walker or jogger – in fact, my feet react very poorly to shoes of any kind anymore except flip-flops – but I did get to watch at the finish line as all the hearty souls came in and congratulated each other for a job well done. But that was just the beginning.
Next came the tributes to those near and dear to the walkers’ hearts: loved ones, successful and not, who fought or fell to cancer. As the line of participants formed along the waterline of the beach, facing the amazingly beautiful sunrise, I could feel everyone’s tears already. One by one they picked up a handful of sand and tossed it into the ocean as they named the person they walked for: “my mother”, “my father“, my sister”, my “brother”, “my friend”….
It was a moment to witness, and one never to forget. Maybe next year I will be in shape to walk or drag my weary paws across the finish line too… “my mother, my grandfather, my daughter-in-law’s best friend, my adopted mom’s husband, my best friend from high school….”. After all, if Miss Cunchy can do it, we all should give it a go!
Raquel then unveiled the drawing of the Belize Cancer Center, handed out the medals, and everyone enjoyed the company and the refreshments supplied.
A full list of participants (you earned a lot of respect that day guys, gals and kids!):
First Place Elementary & Overall : Kai Parham
Second Place Overall: John Guzman
First Place Female: Nazle Frutos
First Place Senior: Myrtis Villanueva
and other finishers Sharyn Green, Tiziana De Col, Lita Krohn, Vincent Guzman, Cordy Ford, John Ford, Nancy Lewandowski, Siripohn Thakham, Jeff Anseasor (sp), Sandra Johnson, Brandon, Wanda Stakutis, Greg Valiton, Virginia Glessner, Michelle McDougal, Amelia Godfrey, Ardie Young, Rosalind Eiley, Gillian Zabaneh, Consuelo Eiley, Liam Parham, Fiona Macfarlane, Jenna Godfrey, Joelle Godfrey, Ciara Vernon, Ann Godfrey, Althea Schable, Lu Lachapelle, Cindy Linarez, Abigail Westby, Lee Nyhus, Pandora Gaudino, Anne Miller, Lisa Harding, Ionie Westby, Rican Hernandez, Kristine Small, Yvette Guild, Lyn Tun, Eve Peck, Bev Vernon, Brandon Westby, John Guzman, Christine Salmon, Ysela Zabaneh, Bruce Leslie, Annette Vernon, Wini Mertens, Michael Battle, Jackie Walton, Sean Walton, Kylon Eiley, Alex, Blake Leslie, Arlene Ferrel, Rachel Major, Gregoria Estrada, Hassan Palacio, John Augusten, Obi, Aretha Rodriguez, Desorine Cassimiro, Ewart Leslie jr., Edlin Leslie Jr, Frankie Gagliano, Anne Marie Mena, & Devone Leslie.