Last year, more than 14,000 men, women and children walked the Beverly neighborhood in commemoration of the countless wives, daughters and mothers who fought the war on breast cancer. Flashback 18 years ago, the Beverly Breast Cancer Walk (BBCW) only consisted of three pioneering women whose vision would inspire the Southland community to think pink on Mother’s Day.
Nearly two decades ago, Chicago area resident, Carol Moriarty sought treatment at Little Company of Mary’s Comprehensive Breast Health Center to aid her in her battle with breast cancer. After a successful plan of treatments, Carol found herself cancer-free with a new profound vision for life.
In 1999, Carol, her sister Nancy Mulcahy and longtime friend, and Beverly resident, Lisa O’Brien, decided to give Southland residents a local option in the fight against breast cancer. What started as a walk among a group of friends and family on Mother’s Day quickly grew into a 14,000 participants and community-wide event that has raised more than $5 million with proceeds benefiting the programs and technology at Little Company of Mary’s Nationally Accredited Comprehensive Breast Health Center.
For nearly two decades, a talented group of committee members have donated their time and talents to make the BBCW a bigger success each year.
“The countless hours spent by the committee and dedicated volunteers on registration, marketing, fundraising, entertainment, and merchandising has not gone unnoticed, and our gratitude for what all the effort accomplishes is immense,” said Brian Lepacek, MDiv, Executive Director of the Little Company of Mary Hospital Foundation. “Who would have dreamed 18 years ago that Carol, Lisa and Nancy would today walk with over 14,000 more friends? Eighteen years is living proof that if we join hands and talents together, we can make a difference – and save lives.”
Over the past 17 years, the BBCW has raised more than $5 million to support LCMH’s award-winning Comprehensive Breast Health Center and impacted the lives of thousands of breast cancer survivors. With generous community support in 2016, the BBCW was able to sustain its support of current breast health programming and continue deepening its impact with the establishment of a BBCW Crisis Fund to assist LCMH breast cancer patients with emergent financial needs within our community. Additionally, a portion of the 2016 event proceeds supported a “sister-walk” partnership with the international organization, People Helping People, bringing much-needed medical equipment, supplies and services to breast cancer patients in poverty-stricken El Salvador. In 2017, our top funding priorities include continued expansion of breast health programming, assisting those who may be in financial crisis during their treatment and empowering survivors through our second annual Cancer Survivor Event.
The 18th Annual Beverly Breast Cancer Walk will take place on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 14, 2017. The walk starts at 8:00 a.m. at Ridge Park located on 96th and Longwood, Chicago, Illinois. Register early to receive a t-shirt with your $30 entry fee. The entry fee for children ages 18 and under is $15. Same-day registration is $10 more for adults and $5 more for children 18 and under. T-shirt availability is not guaranteed for day-of registrants. To register, go to www.BeverlyBreastCancerWalk.org today.