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Relay for Life honors cancer victims and survivors with luminaria ceremony Friday night

COLDWATER, MI (WTVB) - The 16th annual American Cancer Society Branch County Relay-for-Life fundraiser for cancer research and support programs finishes its 24-hour event at noon today at Heritage Park in Coldwater. Last night and every year, the Lumanaria Ceremony is one of the most moving parts of the program with the lighting of candles and honoring cancer victims and survivors including the reading of the names of those who lost their lives to the disease. Pastor Dave Pierce of Coldwater’s First Baptist Church offered an opening and closing prayer for the Lumanaria portion of the evening schedule.

As of Friday night, over $72,000 had been pledged and or collected and Chairperson Cheryl Back is confident of making their $103,000 goal. If that happens, it would be the fourth straight year that at least one-hundred thousand dollars in fundraising for cancer research happened because of Relay for Life in Branch County. Forty pledge teams participated in this year’s effort.