Relay for Life: an experience of hope and inspiration


Dear Editor,

My name is Grace Murphy. I have never participated in a Relay for Life event until this year. I joined UVM’s Colleges Against Cancer club at the beginning of the year and I have committed a lot to this club.

I have been inspired watching the donations made to my team throughout this event. I am incredibly competitive and I am very passionate about this organization so I decided that I wanted to be one of the highest fundraisers for this year.

I have been thinking about donating all of my hair for about a year now and I thought that this would be a fun way to raise a lot of money and give a little kid a wig that would raise their confidence and make them feel better.

I posted on Facebook that if I raised $800 in a week, I would donate all of my hair. I thought it was a stretch asking for so much because most of my friends are college students and rarely even splurge on coffee.

But within four days, I raised just under $1,200! This was so amazing to see. Every time I would get an email alerting me of a new donation, I would not be able to stop smiling!

On the last day of spring break, I went into the hair salon and told the woman behind the counter that I wanted her to shave off all of my hair. She later told me that this was the most extreme haircut she has ever been asked to do. I brought along several of my friends, my brother, and my mom.

This was an extremely fun experience to have with all of them, but it has also given me so much hope and inspiration. Several of my friends are now growing their hair to donate it and one has even told me that she wants to shave her head like me at the beginning of this summer.

Seeing everyone’s reaction to my haircut has really been a wonderful experience that I did not expect at all.

I Relay in honor and in memory of so many people that I love that have been affected by cancer. One of my closest friends from home, who is a survivor herself, lost her mother a few years ago to cancer.

Knowing how hard and long her mother’s fight was pushed me to join this club and try to make as big of a difference as I could. My mom also fought colon cancer last year and is now in remission.

During her fight, I saw a completely new side of her.
I already knew that she was strong and amazing, but I saw a new kind of strength in her and my dad. They went through this fight as a team and came out as winners.

Everyone I know has been affected by cancer in some way. By raising this money, we are funding research to discover a cure for this horrible disease along with helping those that are currently fighting.

This money will be used to change so many lives and it makes me ecstatic to think that I am playing a small role in that.


Grace Murphy

First Year