Runner to help fight vs. cancer

By MELISSA ARNOLD State Journal Staff Writer Published:

Graefenburg resident Roberta Parker sweats for a cause and there is just one issue she wants to stress while training to run the 26.2-mile LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon on Oct. 12, and that is: breast cancer awareness.

According to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation's Newsletter, 39,800 women and 400 men have died from breast cancer in 2003, and it is the "leading cause of death in women ages 20-39 and 40-59." It is predicted that for 2003 in the U.S., 211,300 women and 1,300 men will acquire invasive breast cancer.

The 53-year-old Parker began running off and on in 1986 as a way to stay in shape as well as for a hobby. Also, she said, it is something she and her husband, David Parker, enjoy doing together; he will be running the marathon with her in October.

This determined woman's goal is to raise $26,200 for breast cancer research. She is raising a $1,000 for every mile she runs. The money is going to the Komen Foundation.

"I didn't think a couple thousand seemed like a lot, so I decided to have a big goal," she said.

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