American Cancer Society Relay for Life -- Team Tony's Mafia
Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
Relay for Life of Cuyahoga Falls Oh.
In the mid-1980s, Dr. Gordy Klatt, a Tacoma colorectal
surgeon, wanted to enhance the income of his local
American Cancer Society office. He decided to
personally raise money for the fight against cancer by
doing something he enjoyed—running marathons.
In May 1985, Dr. Klatt spent a grueling 24 hours
circling the track at Baker Stadium at the University of
Puget Sound in Tacoma for more than 83 miles.
Throughout the night, friends donated $25 to run or
walk 30 minutes with him. He raised $27,000 to fight
cancer. That first year, nearly 300 of Dr. Klatt's
friends, family, and patients watched as he ran and
walked the course.
While he circled the track those 24 hours, he thought
about how others could take part. He envisioned a 24-
hour team relay event that could raise more money to
fight cancer. Months later he pulled together a small
committee to plan the first team relay event known as
the City of Destiny Classic 24-Hour Run Against
In 1986, 19 teams took part in the first team relay
event on the track at the colorful, historical Stadium
Bowl and raised $33,000. An indescribable spirit
prevailed at the track and in the tents that dotted the
The vision turned into over 5,200 Relay For Life events
across the United States today and more than $4.5
billion in fundraising to save lives from cancer. In
addition, the American Cancer Society licenses twenty
non-governmental cancer organizations in other
countries to hold Relay For Life events to battle cancer
across the globe.
For 28 years, Relay For Life has provided inspiration
and hope for millions of cancer survivors and
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