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Community Against Cancer: Highlights from Statesboro's annual Relay For Life event

For more than 36 years, Relay For Life has brought together communities worldwide to commemorate those who have battled cancer, celebrate survivors, and rally for life-saving change. On Friday evening, April 19th, the community of Statesboro illuminated that spirit of hope and unity at its annual Relay For Life event.

On the evening of Friday, April 19th, Statesboro once again illuminated the spirit of hope and unity as it hosted its annual Relay For Life event. This occasion, which stands as the world's largest volunteer-based fundraising event, drew in community members from all walks of life to honor loved ones, support survivors, and advocate for groundbreaking cancer research.

For over 36 years, Relay For Life has served as a beacon of solidarity, bringing together communities worldwide to commemorate those who have battled cancer, celebrate survivors, and rally for life-saving change. Here in Statesboro, this tradition holds special significance, embodying the collective strength and resilience of our local community.


The heart of Relay For Life lies in the symbolic act of individuals taking turns walking around a track lined with luminaria bags, each representing a story of courage and perseverance.

One of the most powerful moments during the event is the inaugural lap, where survivors, including members of the Georgia Southern Eagles Football and Cheer Team, lead the procession, joined by caregivers and family members.


This year's Relay For Life was made possible through the generous support of numerous local sponsors and businesses, including RE/MAX, East Georgia Regional Medical Center, Metter Ford, Southern Chiropractic, and many others. RE/MAX, for instance, hosted the survivors' tent, providing a resting space for those battling cancer and their loved ones.

Lori Wiggins outside of the RE/MAX survivors tent.

Thanks to the support of these sponsors, along with the contributions from Relay for Life teams and individuals, this year's fundraising goal of $50,000 was met, and exceeded, highlighting the community's dedication to fighting cancer together. Each dollar raised contributes to groundbreaking cancer research, patient care programs, and initiatives that make a difference in communities like Statesboro.

Community members could be seen throughout, showing their support for survivors by walking alongside them, offering cheers of encouragement, and engaging with the various vendors. Among the groups present were the Georgia Southern ROTC, and EGRMC, who hosted a raffle and operated a tie-dye station, adding to the vibrant atmosphere. The Saucy Shrimp Food Truck was also there, representing #SaucyStrong.


Additionally, numerous families of survivors were in attendance, further enhancing the sense of solidarity and support.

Maurice Jackson attended alongside his son and other family members.

From left to right: Anna Jackson, Justin Jackson, Maurice Jackson, Kimberly Jackson, Stella Jackson

Lynn Hendrix, Riley Hendrix, and Jessie Faircloth, survivors of 29 and 5 years respectively.


Jessica DeLaigle celebrated her first year as a survivor alongside her friend Kelly Jordan, honoring her second year as a survivor. It was their first time walking in Relay for Life, joined by their mothers and daughters.

From left to right: Ana Marshall, Kelly Jordan, Kinsley, Jessica DeLaigle, Karen DeLaigle, Bella (front center)

Lori Wiggins, a 15-year survivor and dedicated volunteer for 18, emphasized the event's emotional significance in remembering loved ones and supporting those still fighting. For Lori, Relay For Life is not just a fundraiser but a deeply personal journey of remembrance and resilience. 

“It’s emotional for me because I’ve lost so many incredible people I’ve loved and so to get to this means everything. As long as I’m able, I’ll be doing this.”

Wiggins recognized and thanked publically at the event for service and fundraising.

Lori is joined by her husband, who was serving at the dunkee in the sink tank. 

Statesboro's Relay For Life embodies the collective strength and compassion of our community, offering hope and inspiration in the fight against cancer as we continue to make strides towards a future free from the shadows of this disease.