SAN ANTONIO - Emotional, motivational and inspirational are three words that only begin to describe the 2018 Head for the Cure 5K on Saturday.
The event, which is in its fifth year in San Antonio, has seen rapid growth.
More than 1,100 people participated as runners or walkers and more than $82,000 was raised for the cause. There's still time left to donate.
The rain couldn’t stop runners this morning at #HeadForTheCure more than 1,100 people showed up, and more than $82,000 has been raised. But it’s not over, you can still donate! https://t.co/OYUXuZfpYo pic.twitter.com/9Koz8s3cYR — KSAT Max Massey (@MaxMasseyTV) September 22, 2018
Several stood in the rain for hours to honor those they lost to cancer, those still battling the disease and some celebrating life, all while raising money to help find a cure.
What does Head for the Cure mean to you?
For employees and friends of KSAT 12 News, the race is especially close to our hearts. The race was organized by the daughter of KSAT 12's former news director Jim Boyle, who died from brain cancer.
“Jim hired me and a lot of people in that newsroom and he was a mentor to me and so many of us in the newsroom, so when he first went down, we wanted to do something in his honor because we know every family has a Jim Boyle that is going through this horrible disease,” said KSAT 12 executive producer Mario Orellana.
Several KSAT employees wore their Team Boyle shirts, including longtime anchor David Sears.
“He was always concerned for his employees, especially the ones on the road, so today we are representing team Boyle,” said Sears.
This #HeadForTheCure race is so important to so many people and specifically touches the hearts at @ksatnews in honor of the our former news director Jim Boyle pic.twitter.com/l6AnCvTeeu — KSAT Max Massey (@MaxMasseyTV) September 22, 2018
But with 1,100 people at the event, it seemed that everyone had their own story.
Participant Elisa Ryan was on Team George Matters. Ryan and her friends and family were supporting her brother, George, who survived brain cancer. George had to go through surgery that required the removal of part of his skull and radiation.
“Everyone here is going through what we are going through just wishing and praying for a cure,” Ryan said.
Meet George De Luna and his team. George had a brain tumor and his family uses #HeadForTheCure as a celebration of his life and to help raise money to find a cure so no families have to go through what they did. pic.twitter.com/WuYp42tXwm — KSAT Max Massey (@MaxMasseyTV) September 22, 2018
There were runners and walkers of all speeds on Saturday. The winner of the 5K, Elijah Nelson, said beating cancer was a big motivator as he crossed the finish line.
“When you’re on the course and you’re really just hammering it, your body is just telling you you’re done, but those kids fighting cancer their bodies aren’t done, so you gotta keep fighting,” said Nelson.
Nelson also lost a childhood friend to cancer.
“Luke always crosses my mind from time to time but especially today because he made a big impact on my life,” Nelson said.
Whether it was enthusiastic high fives, hugs or head nods, the teams, the families and even the individual runners may have came separately, but by the time they left, they were part of a united cause: the fight to find a cure.
This is Scotty Dogg who went through colon cancer and has raced the #HeadForTheCure every year since it started... he uses this shirt to motivate himself and others pic.twitter.com/UPe5Zwull2 — KSAT Max Massey (@MaxMasseyTV) September 22, 2018
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