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Eugene-Springfield Relay for Life wraps up 2017 event

The 2017 Relay for Life of Eugene-Springfield began at 6 p.m. Friday and wrapped up Saturday morning, July 15, 2017. (SBG)

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- The 2017 Relay for Life of Eugene-Springfield began at 6 p.m. Friday and wrapped up Saturday morning.

Officials say it’s the 8th largest Relay for Life in the world, measured by the amount of money it raises for the American Cancer Society.

At Saturday’s closing ceremony, relayers ran their final lap: “If you are a caregiver, stand up and start clapping; it’s now time to take our final lap." the voice echoed through the loudspeaker.

An event that lasted 16 hours, cancer survivors, caregivers, family and friends were ready to wrap up yet another year of fighting back against cancer.

The 2017 Relay for Life wrapped Saturday with old and new participants taking part in that final lap.

"This was our 25th anniversary,” said event chair Tianna Harris, “we’ve had people come since ‘92 at Hayward Field, all the way to now…and every year we have new people."

Over 110 teams registered for this year's event, contributing to the $600,000 goal.

Dutch Bros. was one of the main sponsors for the event and raised over $62,000.

"In the actual event here, we bring this big beautiful trailer behind you… you see, it’s called ‘the transformer,’ said Dutch Bros. representative Blaine Liberatore. “We bring that up here and we serve coffee the entire event. From kickoff to closing ceremonies."

The money made from coffee sales at the event is an additional donation made to the American Cancer Society.

As teams cleaned up, they reflected on the progress made for the fight against cancer.

“Research has done so much,” said relay participant Diana Burnette. “1 out of 10 people used to survive cancer, and now 2 out of 3 survive."

Burnette has been relaying for the past 18 years and says she will continue to do so

"I don’t want my son or grandkids to deal with what I had to deal with…what I dealt with growing up."

As the relay wraps up, preparation for next year will start soon.

The last day to make a donation to the Eugene-Springfield Relay will be August 31. For information visit the website.

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