PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Mother’s Day is always a double celebration for thousands of breast cancer survivors and their families in the Pittsburgh area.
They gathered at Schenley Park Sunday morning for the 19th annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. Once again this year, the day that cherishes mothers has also become a day that salutes the thousands of women surviving and winning the war against breast cancer.
“In 1982, when Komen started, stage one – a five-year survival rate – was about 78 percent; and today, it is 98 to 99 percent,” said Kathy Purcell, the executive director.
According to race organizers, the 2011 Race for the Cure attracted more than 30,000 participants, including approximately 2,500 breast cancer survivors.
Women like Cindy Crowley, a two-and-a-half-year breast cancer survivor, got lots of family support.
“Unbelievable. You need the family and friends around you,” said Crowley. “They were my strength. I couldn’t have done it without them.”
Dolly Lowe is a 15-year survivor.
“If it wasn’t for God, I don’t think I would be here today, and then for family and friends,” said Lowe. “You need people; you need a support system when you go through.”
The Pittsburgh affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure has raised $23 million this year for research, education and screening.
“I think early detection certainly is what saves lives. Stage one means early detection, spreading the word [on] how important it is to get a mammogram,” said Purcell. “It’s extremely important, and we’re discovering things about treatment that is really helping women live longer.”
The event is expected to raise more than $2 million with thousands participating in a 5K walk and run.
Below is a list of the winners released by race organizers:
1st Place Overall Winners:
- Male: Paul Tristle of Pittsburgh – 15:49
- Female: Michelle Corkum of McMurray – 18:13
2nd Place Overall Winners:
- Male: Marco Dozzi of Pittsburgh – 15:58
- Female: Anna Beck of Washington, Pa. – 18:21
3rd Place Overall Winners:
- Male: Steve Strelick of Allison Park – 16:22
- Female: Morgan Ansel of Greensburg – 19:16
Survivor Category Winners:
- 1st Place Survivor: Ginny Ellwood of Irwin – 22:15
- 2nd Place Survivor: Lori Dunlap of Somerset – 23:16
- 3rd Place Survivor: Susan Johnson of North Huntingdon – 24:48
- Master Survivor (age 40-59): Faith Vallese of Coraopolis – 25:34
- Senior Survivor (60+): Carol O’Donnell – 31:45