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Relay for Life
When Devin Reilly ’13 made the decision to come to Washington College, she knew how she was going to make her mark.
In honor of her grandmother, whom she lost to breast cancer, and her now cancer-free mother, Devin brought Relay for Life to campus in the beginning of her sophomore year. She had experience manning the event after having started it at her high school in Towson, MD, but was nevertheless blown away by the response.
“Our goal [the first year] was $35,000, and we beat that goal by raising over $42,000. I was in awe of what the Relay for Life committee and the Washington community had achieved,” said Devin.
With that in mind, the Relay committee set the goal higher the next year, at $45,000. Yet again, their goal was outstripped by student and community members’ contributions; they raised a grand total of $58,886.
“The WC community has responded to Relay more positively than I could have ever imagined,” she said. “In our economy, fundraising is a difficult thing and, amazingly, we have blown our fundraising goals out of the water both years.”
Devin’s motivation to get involved with Relay for Life and the American Cancer Society stems from her mother’s diagnosis with Hodgkin’s Disease. Though initially her treatment went well, Devin’s mother was hospitalized for two years after the disease came back.
“Being the oldest, I took it upon myself to shoulder the family responsibilities and make sure that my sister was well taken care of and living as normal a life as possible,” she shared. “Relay is important to me because I think that no child should ever have to see a parent deteriorate like that at such a young age and have their childhood stolen from them like my sister and I did. Thankfully, my mother beat the disease again after a three-year battle and is still with us today, cancer-free.”
Sharing an event with such personal significance with others is one of the highlights of Devin’s Relay experience.
“My favorite thing is when new Relayers come up and tell me how much they enjoyed themselves and how they intend to Relay for a very long time; it’s amazing to be able to help people get involved like that.”