FORT POLK, La.- Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital officially kicked off National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with the 1st Glow Run at Alligator Lake Oct. 5. Over 300 families turned out to show their support for survivors, those battling breast cancer and those who have lost their
battle.

Each participant received a pink glow necklace to help light the way as the sun began to set.

MAJ William Callis, chief of Preventive Medicine and Deputy Commander of Human Resources, welcomed the supporters, many dressed in pink with glowing hair and necklaces. He urged them to talk to their doctor about which breast cancer screening tests are right for them and when they should have them. He also reminded the group that women age 50-75 should have a mammogram every two years. Callis introduced his co-worker, Sheila Anthony, a breast cancer survivor of 2 years, seven month.

"This is a cause very dear to my heart," Anthony told the group. "As of March 2017, about 3.1 million women in the United States have a history of breast cancer and that one in eight U.S. women or 12.4 percent will develop invasive breast cancer in the course of over the course of her lifetime," she stressed. Anthony stated that although breast cancer screenings can't prevent breast cancer, they can help detect it early, when it's easier to treat.

COL Marla J. Ferguson, MEDDAC Commander, told the participants that breast cancer is not gender specific; it affects both men and women. She thanked everyone for their support and that it was time to tackle the course.

Alligator Lake provided a paved path with hills and valleys, ideal for runners, walkers, strollers filled with babies and toddlers. One lap equaled .9 and two laps made up 3.1k. Some of the hardcore runners ran the course three or four times.

After finishing the run, participants enjoyed free snow cones complements of Roland Cimini, owner of the snow cone machine and his partner, James McArthur, both members of the Fort Polk Fire Department.