Saturday, May 5, 2007

Cancer? Never Heard of It

Cancer? Never heard of it...that's the attitude folks at the Relay for Life event seem to take, at least during this event or when talking to me. Tara Allgood may have been going through chemotherapy for colon cancer, but you'd never know it by the way she was making her way around the track. I snapped a few shots of her, then she was nice enough to slow her run down to a brisk jog while I tried to keep pace next to her while she told me her name and gave me some information. I gave up maybe a quarter of the way around the track and told her I'd "catch up" with her on her next pass as I moved on to get other images, breathing a little heavily and sweating. All of that, and she told me that in addition to running laps holding a torch for Schumpert Nursing, she was also running a 5K in the morning!

Seven-year-old Walker Chowns, who had surgery at 11-months of age to remove a tumor from his brain stem, was riding his bicycle around the track with his little sister. He was a little shy, but he seemed to be enjoying himself and was headed off for a horse ride after I talked with his mother a few moments.

When I had arrived at the event I was tired from some time out in the humidity, I had one of my notoriously incapacitating migraines coming on, and I really didn't feel like working. It didn't take long before the folks there had me laughing and enjoying myself, talking about a Harley Davidson motorcycle on display and my dreams to one day own one (after I learn to ride one first of course), playing peek-a-boo with a baby, sneaking shots of folks dancing and acting silly and joking about it with them once I was "caught", and turning down offers for barbecue and gumbo left and right.

After I left, I still had a headache, I was hot, tired and sweaty. But I felt lifted. Those folks were all as nice as can be, and they made me feel welcome.


trudeau 5/06/2007 3:42 PM  

You treated this difficult story with humor and witty kindness, greg. Your skill and heart are admirable.

Greg Pearson 5/06/2007 3:48 PM  

They made it easy for me, Robert!

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