Nearly 1,400 people took to the roads of Grand Cayman, Little Cayman and Cayman Brac Sunday in the first nationwide Stride Against Cancer.
Coming into the last week of registration, numbers seemed low, but organizers were delighted to see hundreds more register to take part as the run/walk neared.
Jennifer Weber, operations manager at the Cayman Islands Cancer Society, which organized the event, said this year saw the biggest turnout in Stride’s history.
After the runs were completed, Ms Weber said: “I am spent but thrilled to have such an amazing community turnout.”
Among the runners at Seven Mile Beach this year was Governor Helen Kilpatrick, taking part in her first Stride, and Deputy Governor Franz Manderson, who is a familiar face at many of the charity runs in the Cayman Islands.
The support on the Sister Islands and on Grand Cayman this year has prompted the organizers to make future Stride Against Cancer events nationwide.
“It was this time last year we decided to go ‘nationwide,’” said Ms Weber. “Now nationwide will be the norm.”
All proceeds of the run/walk go towards the creation of a new chemotherapy unit.
Some 1,200 walkers and runners turned out to take part in the half and quarter marathons that started at Public Beach on Seven Mile Beach, 36 took part on Cayman Brac, 56 on Little Cayman and around another 100 participated in the North Side run.
This year, runners and walkers could dedicate their participation in Stride to a loved one by filling in their names in a blank space on the back of the white, purple and yellow T-shirts following the words “I Stride for ….” Many participants wrote the name of a family member or friend who had lost a battle with cancer, is suffering from it or who had recovered from the disease.