Park Point Beach Runners to Dash Toward Pancreatic Cancer Awareness

By KBJR News 1

September 20, 2013 Updated Sep 20, 2013 at 2:49 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCOW.COM)

For the first time ever, Grandma's Marathon will host the Park Point Beach Run for Pancreatic Cancer, this Saturday.

Mary Beth Waage is a volunteer for the Park Point Beach Run for Pancreatic Cancer.

She is also a pancreatic cancer survivor.

"If you live there's a reason that you lived. I think I lived because I need to educate the public on what it means and possibly help somebody else get an early diagnosis so that they get diagnosed and have a better chance," says Waage.

She now volunteers with other survivors to help organize events like this 5k beach run.

"We continue on, planning events, having events, as many of us who are survivors as we can, go to these events."

Jim Peterson, a participant in the run, says he's seen too many loved ones attacked by the deadly disease.

On Saturday, he will run for them, and so future lives are spared.

"One of my very oldest friends has a couple of teenage sons who have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. It's just a terrible diagnosis to receive and it's just some thing that deserves our attention," says Peterson.

Grandma's Marathon will donate 5 dollars from every entry fee to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.

"It's the fourth most deadly cancer. Something like three quarters diagnosed with pancreatic cancer don't survive even one year," says Peterson.

"And it's expected that that number will moved to number two by 2020 and possibly 2015," adds Waage.

For the past two years Pancreatic Cancer Action Network has sponsored Team Hope for Grandma's Marathon.

This year however, Scott Keenan, Grandma's Marathon Director, was moved to dedicate an entire run to pancreatic cancer awareness.

"Two of the members on the Grandmas Marathon board of directors have died from pancreatic cancer is the past year. And it struck him hard as it does a lot of us," says Peterson.

Mary Beth Waage was struck by cancer two years ago.

Her friends gave her hope in a hard time.

"They were there for me through every step of this journey.

On Saturday Waage will work and Peterson will run, both Making a Difference in the Northland and Beyond.

Tickets for the event are available up to the day of the race.

Posted to the web by Gabrielle Ware