Breast Cancer walk to make more strides Oct. 8

Contact this contributing writer at

How to go

What: Making Strides Against Breast Cancer — Springfield

Where: Springfield Regional Cancer Center, 148 W. North St., Springfield

When: Saturday, Oct. 8. Registration: 8 a.m., walk: 9 a.m.

Walk length: 5K (3.1 miles)

More info: or call 937-323-5028

By the numbers

5: Number of years for the event

5,677: Total number of participants since the event began

$250,000: Money raised in Springfield since 2012

​The quote sticks with Teresa Hawke both as a reminder and a motivator.

“One of our patients said she had cancer but cancer didn’t have her,” Hawke said. “It reminds me that we must always have hope and faith. We are winning this fight.”

Hawke is the chairwoman for the Springfield Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk — which will be held on Oct. 8. She sees firsthand the struggles of cancer patients as the business office supervisor for radiation and oncology at the Springfield Regional Cancer Center.

“The patients come in as someone unknown and they become family,” Hawke said. “We are here to support, care for, love and nurture them throughout their cancer journey.”

The American Cancer Society estimates that approximately 246,660 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in the United States this year. Another 61,000 new cases of carcinoma in situ (CIS) — a non-invasive and the earliest form of breast cancer — will be diagnosed. An estimated 40,450 American women will die from breast cancer this year.

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks are designed to provide an opportunity to unite as a community to honor breast cancer survivors; raise awareness about ways to reduce the risk of getting breast cancer and raise money to help the American Cancer Society fund breast cancer research, provide information and support 24-7, and provide access to mammograms for women who need them. The choice to the chair such a meaningful event was an easy one for Hawke.

“When someone is diagnosed with cancer, it doesn’t just affect them; it affects their family and friends. It truly is life changing,” Hawke said. “We are here to provide hope for the patients, show them that no one walks alone.”

There are many reasons to hope. Death rates from breast cancer have been dropping since 1989, with the largest decreases in women younger than 50. These decreases are likely the result of early detection through screening and increased awareness, as well as better treatments.

“We are winning this fight,” Hawke said. “Survivorship is growing each year.”

There are currently more than 2.8 million breast cancer survivors in the United States alone.

Last year’s Springfield Strides event included 87 teams and close to 2,000 participants. Hawke is hoping for 2,500 participants this year.

“Springfield, Ohio, is making a difference,” Hawke said.

About the Author