To the editor:
As we participated in the Winnebago Relay for Life Event in Forest City, our spirits were literally dampened by the rain. Our parade got rained on as the skies opened up and pelted a needed rain shower on Forest City’s annual event. The beautifully handcrafted luminaries that memorialized and honored cancer effected people withered in the rain shower. The thought, design and labor in making the luminaries seemed to collapse as the rain soaked bags withered with each raindrop. The survivor’s dinner in the atrium fell short with 70 some eating for the planned 130 dinners prepared.
The disappointment of the weather not cooperating with this planned event reminded me of the disappointment of being told you have cancer. A cancer affected person is dealt with a totally unplanned disappointment in their plan for life. Suddenly your life has changed forever, having to adjust to dealing with life with cancer. All of the names that Orin Harris read off of the honored and fallen cancer affected people have had to deal with rain on our parade of life.
The stories of Cole Christianson and Alicia Klett were a definite reminder that cancer can effect young people and cancer does not discriminate who is next. The sun came out for a brief moment as they shared their cancer journey. It was like God wanted a moment for us to hear their experience.
As we left in the pouring rain, I felt like the rain was controlling our life at that moment. Also, water is the source of life and with the rain comes new life. As we drove away a full rainbow was glowing in the East. It was like a message that it will be OK.
Thank you to everyone who planned, worked, and performed at this event. In spite of the rain it was truly inspiring. Hope prevails.
Bink Keller, cancer survivor