Space Coast Booty Run/Walk 5K 2015

Benefitting Colon Cancer Patients

On May 17, hundreds of runners and walkers descended upon Indian Harbour Beach, donning boxers, tutus, swimsuits and more, with one goal: to help fight colon cancer, heighten awareness, and raise funds for those it affects.

This was the event’s second year, which was held previously at Ballard Park in Melbourne. It was created by Dr. Rachel Lefebvre, a psychologist who was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer shortly after her 40th birthday. Realizing how few resources there were on colon cancer awareness, a disease that can be preventable, treatable, and curable when caught early, she started the Booty Run/Walk 5K.

Donna.Skattum-IMG_1077_JSThis year, the walk was in honor of Donna Skattum, who was diagnosed with colon cancer at the age of 50 and passed away in August 2014. “Donna worked for over a decade helping charities and the people who make Brevard County one of the most giving and supportive communities in the country. As events editor at SpaceCoast Living, Donna helped promote these charitable events so that others less fortunate might enjoy a better life,” said Teresa Kinney, the event organizer.

Marta Fiol, secretary of the Cancer Care Center of Brevard Foundation, commented, “Donna promoted our Foundation for over 13 years, always being there to take photos at our major events, even during her toughest treatments, which will never be forgotten. We thank Donna’s husband, Jon and her Mom having allowed us to do the run in loving memory of her.”

Helping Patients to Focus on Healing

According to the Colon Cancer Alliance, colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the U.S. with 132,700 new cases of large bowel cancer annually, but research shows that it is 90 percent preventable, curable, and beatable when caught early. Today, there are more than one million colon cancer survivors in the U.S.

“My dedication to spread colon cancer awareness comes from my own mother’s diagnosis with stage 3 colon cancer in 2012. Thankfully, she’s in remission,” Kinney said. “Cancer Care Alliance’s 2015 motto of ‘Never too Young’ is also a huge concern of mine, as approximately 10 percent of colon cancer cases are diagnosed in individuals under age 50. It’s not just an ‘old person’s disease.’”

The second annual Booty Run/Walk 5K benefitted Cancer Care Center of Brevard Foundation, which assists local cancer patients in Brevard and Indian River counties undergoing treatments, by paying for their rent, water, electricity, phone, pain and cancer-related medications. It also offers 68 miles of support throughout the county with various support groups encompassing mind body and spirit during a patient’s most challenging time.

In addition to the run/walk, the event also featured the Human-Powered Snow-Cone Wheel and music by Jesse Hall, MC/DJ of INI Productions. Awards were also given out, including the Best Booty Award, the Top 3 Booty Teams, M&F Overall, M&F Top Masters, Top Stroller Finisher and M&F Top 3 in all age groups.

Fiol said, “I’m excited for this opportunity because Donna’s memory will live on in the Brevard community forever.”

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This article appears in the June 2015 issue of SpaceCoast Business.
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