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Taking many steps to battle tumors

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by Bill Dunning

 

On Saturday, 75 participants young and old alike, gathered at Ray Jewell Park to challenge themselves to walk 3.2 miles to raise money and awareness for a special cause. For the first time in Kentucky, organizer Jennifer Gable organized a Children’s Tumor Foundation 5K Walk in Taylorsville.
Many families from the area and from other communities in Kentucky, came together to raise money and awareness for children who face a life with the genetic disorder Neurofibromatosis, also known as NF. A disorder that causes small tumors to grow in children, the hope for Gable is to not only help raise awareness, but to help find a cure for children with NF like her daughter Zarah.
Many families joined the walk in honor of their children. For Spencer County High School Senior Dalton Fredrick and his mom, Rhonda, this event was important because he also lives with NF. At the age of five, Fredrick had a seizure which, after many tests, they found out was caused by this genetic disorder.
“Our family has no trace of NF as far as we know so it really was a fluke thing that Dalton ended up with it,” said Fredrick’s mom. “We are lucky, though. Dalton hasn’t had a seizure for years and we are now only having to have a scan every three years to check on the trace of tumors he has on his brain.”
Every year since he started school, Rhonda has made sure Dalton’s teachers had materials to know more about what her son has. For the many families, that is their hope, to bring more awareness to their communities. Even though the participants faced a walk in the blistering sun and heat, there were lots of smiles, laughter and encouragement knowing they were walking for a great cause.
Along with the walk, participants were joined by many vendors offering their crafts and other products including food, a silent auction and raffle items. As of the day of the event, over $1,200 was raised for the foundation with the hope that much more would be added after all donations are counted.