The American Cancer Society Relay For Life of Guam hosted the Cancer Survivors Drive N Wave Saturday to reinvent the annual survivor’s victory lap.
Each year, Guam’s community comes together for the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life to honor those affected by cancer.
The annual event, typically held at the George Washington High School field, garners exceptional moral support from Guam’s community. According to Joe Rios, Relay for Life of Guam’s event mentor, the event sees thousands of people annually. In addition, it raises a significant amount of funds for the American Cancer Society while bringing awareness to services available in Guam.
“Relay For Life of Guam has been around for more than 25/30 years—it is one of the major fundraising events for the American Cancer Society— Not only is it to raise funds but also to bring awareness to our community that we have survivors, caregivers, and that we have a community to come together to work on finding a cure, raise funds, and to bring awareness of what services are available here,” Rios said.
However, due to the pandemic, this year’s Relay For Life celebration is different. Rios stated that because Guam’s community cannot gather in one place, the Relay For Life is safely hosting various events throughout July to the end of this year, aligning with this year’s theme: “Island Strong: Together We Beat Cancer.”
For example, in place of the survivor’s victory lap, which is one of the most anticipated events of Relay for Life, the organization hosted the Cancer Survivors Drive N Wave on Saturday. The Drive N Wave aims to honor the cancer survivors in Guam’s community and also signifies the start of the Relay for Life celebrations.
When asked about what the Drive N Wave entailed, Rios said: “The survivors Drive N Wave is one way that we can have an event to celebrate our survivors and caregivers— and have them drive by— we’re gonna have all of the different teams, what we call ‘paparazzi’ there to wave to all the survivors as they drive up.”
The Survivor Drive N Wave was held on July 10th at Tiyan High School. The first vehicle kicked off the wave at 2 pm. For more information about upcoming events, visit www.relayforlife.org/guamgu. Or call the Guam Field Office at 477-9451.