Thousands Participate In The 24th Annual Susan G. Komen Philadel - KMSP-TV

Thousands Participate In The 24th Annual Susan G. Komen Philadelphia Race For The Cure

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PHILADELPHIA- The weather was perfect in Center City for the 24th annual Susan G. Komen Philadelphia Race for the Cure.

Fox 29's Drew Dickman reports.

While we spent the day celebrating our mothers, many of them continued an annual Mother's Day tradition, raising money for the fight against breast cancer.

Nearly every one of today's walkers and runners has battled cancer themselves or has been touched by someone who has.

The mothers who have survived this disease said it was the perfect way to spend the beginning of their Mother's Day.

It's the largest walk in Philadelphia, but the race for the cure remains miles away.

"Cancer can hit anybody. I'm pretty sure it's hit everybody's family,” cancer survivor Mary Young said.

For this Mother's Day tradition, tens of thousands walked and ran through Center City.

Some did it for a personal battle.

"I'm a two time breast cancer survivor and it's a wonderful way to celebrate and put the hope out there that maybe next year we won't have to have this race,” Gerry Cooper of Wilmington, DE said.

Others did it to support a loved one, like Lenora Culbreth, whose mother Clarice died of the disease in 2009.

"My aunt, my mother's sister also has breast cancer and is in remission. I just find it to be of some sort of honor, some type of sense of gratitude,” she said.

Culbreth's daughter was by her side on this Mother's Day.

"I also do this for her, not just for my grandmother, but I do this to say, mom I love you, thank you for everything,” Lia Batiste said.

"She was a beautiul lady. She died in 07, complications with chemo,” April Brown-Vodounou said.

The chemotherapy was used to ward off breast cancer for Brown-Vodounou's mom, Cynthia.

The two did the walk often before she passed.

"We did it together when I lived in Chicago, we did it together here. She told us on a Mother's Day that she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She didn't make it to the next year,” she said.

The event raised an estimated two and a half million dollars, but Brown-Vodounou is losing patience with others losing loved ones.

In the meantime, the march of optimism continues, one survivor step at a time.

"I'm beating this thing. This is my third bout. I know I'm beating it again, I've already done it,” cancer survivor Kathy Hargrove said.

In addition to research, the money raised at today's event will go towards education, screening, outreach and treatment.

Those services will be provided to women in our local community.

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