After having been a fixture in Salmon Arm since 2003, the Canadian Cancer Society will not be holding a Relay for Life in the city this year.
Brenda Kurtz, who has volunteered with the relay since its inception, said organizers were informed it won’t be happening.
“That’s just the word we were given, it wasn’t our decision. I think what they’ve done is eliminated several of them and are concentrating on just a few in the province. Ours was the last one in this area.”
She said Jen Dies, who was manager of the society’s Salmon Arm branch, is no longer there.
Kurtz said although the relay won’t be taking place, former committee members would still like to hold a Luminary Walk.
She has written to city council to ask permission to hold the walk at Marine Park on June 8.
“We want to still recognize our survivors and caregivers and offer the opportunity for individuals to honour their loved ones by buying luminaries and lighting them on that evening,” she wrote.
Kurtz cautions that organizers won’t be proceeding with plans for a Luminary Walk this year until they’re sure they have all the necessary approvals.
Asked if she’s okay with not having a relay, Kurtz is forthright.
“No, I’ll be honest. I wish we were still able to do it, but we could see a decline every year.”
Since its start in 2003, the Salmon Arm Relay for Life has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the cancer society.
The 2018 event at the Salmon Arm Fairgrounds attracted more than 200 people who attended to support cancer survivors, remember those lost to cancer and assist research towards a cure. It raised more than $79,000.
The Canadian Cancer Society has not responded to a request for comment.