Community Walks for Breast Cancer Awareness

Story Number: NNS121004-17Release Date: 10/4/2012 9:32:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Amanda Dunford, Navy Region Hawaii Public Affairs

PEARL HARBOR (NNS) -- The American Cancer Society is hosting the fourth annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk in Hawaii, Oct 6.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the event raises awareness and funds to help end breast cancer by supporting the society's efforts to find cures and support programs and services for all people facing the disease.

"One in every two women newly diagnosed with breast cancer reaches out to the American Cancer Society for help and support," explained Milton Hirata, director of communications for the American Cancer Society, High Plains Division - Hawai`i Pacific. "An estimated 226,870 new cases of invasive breast cancers are expected to occur among women in the U.S. during 2012, about 2,190 new cases are expected in men."

Funds raised through the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk enable the American Cancer Society to provide free resources and support to the one in two women newly diagnosed with breast cancer who turn to the society for information and help; to invest in research to find, prevent, treat and cure breast cancer, and to ensure access to mammograms for women who need them.

"Over 3,000 participants raised over $150,000 to help breast cancer in ... our inaugural walk in 2009. The second year of the walk there were over 4,00 walkers and last year, over 8,000 walkers raised nearly $200,000," Hirata said.

Thousands of local breast cancer survivors, volunteers, businesses and community members will walk the five-mile route from Aloha Stadium to Richardson Field.

Mary Johnson, a registered nurse and breast health educator at Naval Branch Health Clinic Hawaii-Makalapa and Tripler Army Medical Center, supports the walk every year.

"I will be working with other exercise professionals to warm up this year's participants. I have performed this role for the last four years for the making strides effort," said Johnson. "My passion for combatting breast cancer was born a little over a decade ago when my sister-in-law was diagnosed with the disease. She received her treatment at Tripler Army Medical Center and I began my journey as a breast cancer navigator. I have cared for several women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer over the past nine years. I have learned an incredible amount of patience, strength and knowledge from them. I walk to honor them and to honor those friends whom I have lost."

Participants can sign up online at and choose to either, "Start a new team," "Join an existing team," or "Walk as an individual." Registration is also open the morning of the walk, starting at 6:30 a.m. at Richardson Field, with a rolling start from 7 to 9 a.m. on the Ford Island Bridge.

For more information, visit,, or

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