A dense parade of pink flowed westward on Prospect Avenue Saturday morning.

First it burst forth at the brisk pace of 5K runners, then slower, as tens of thousands people walked — as fast as they could move in a crowd estimated at 20,000. They were all there to raise money for breast cancer research.


This was the 16th year for the Susan B. Komen “Race for the Cure” in Cleveland, and the third change in the race’s location — to Cleveland State University’s Wolstein Center.

High spirits were fueled by cheerleaders, chants, and speakers blaring those evergreen yet appropriate anthems of the ’70s — the Pointer Sisters’ “We Are Family,” and Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive.”

Sophie Sureau, executive director of Komen’s Northeast Ohio affiliate, said the group won’t know how much money was raised until Nov. 1, when all the pledges are in. She hopes it will be around the $1.6 million taken in last year.

Sureau praised the new location, but acknowledged it was unfamiliar to the participants. “Whenever we change locations, people have to get the lay of the land,” she said.

As is the tradition for Komen walks, survivors wore pink T-shirts, while those walking in support or memory of friends and family wore white shirts trimmed in pink — or a T-bearing a slogan of choice. A number of guys favored “Man Up: Go the Distance.”

Sisters Mary Brown of Cleveland and Patty Brown of Euclid were in pink. Both are breast cancer survivors, as are two of their sisters.


Mary Brown walked in the “Race for the Cure” some years ago, but this time, it was as a 16-month survivor. She’s also done a 60-mile, three-day walk earlier this summer.

“This is a family cause,” she said. “It’s been like a time bomb for us. So it feels great to be part of this team of humanity that took it to the streets this morning.”

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Article courtesy cleveland.com

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