By Kelly Collins / Staff Writer
By Kelly Collins / Staff Writer
Every October, pink ribbons can be seen everywhere in support of those who have suffered from breast cancer, and to search for a cure.
October was first recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness month in 1985. The symbolic pink ribbon was first used in 1991, when the Susan G. Komen Foundation handed the ribbons out during a race in New York to honor breast cancer survivors.
Twenty years later the image is still a universal symbol commonly seen on products at fundraisers and worn by those who have lost someone from breast cancer.
During the month of October, companies change the labels on their products to pink and pledge a certain amount of each purchase in going directly to breast cancer research.
In 2010, about 40,000 women in America lost their lives due to breast cancer.
It is an estimate that 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011 according Susan G. Komen.
With such statistics, most people know of someone who has been affected by the disease, making this month personal for many.
Robyn Razook is a Riverside City College student who has decided to do all she can for breast cancer awareness, having lost two important people in her life to the disease.
Eight years ago her grandmother passed away because of breast cancer.
“I was very close to her,” Razook said. “I was at her house every other weekend, my other grandparents lived in Florida, and so she was all I had.”
Shortly after graduating high school she learned her choir teacher had passed away from breast cancer after having struggled with the illness for several years.
“I took her class all four years of high school. She was one of my favorite teachers,” she said. “She was always available for her students if we needed to talk.”
Over the years Razook has participated in several events to raise money for research.
For the past three years she has participated in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, a 24-hour walk in which she raised money through several sponsorships.
“I was on a team of about fifteen people, and each year we raised around $1000 for the Relay for Life,” Razook said.
This year, Razook is bringing her ambition to the RCC campus. As secretary and treasurer of RCC’s Reading and Writing Project, Razook is determined to get the club involved for breast cancer awareness month.
“The last two weeks of October we will be handing out pink ribbons to raise awareness and accept donations,” she said.
Several events will be held in Riverside during the month of October to raise awareness as well.
The second annual “Tailpipes for Tata’s” event was held at Zorba’s Burgers on Iowa Ave. on Oct. 15, inviting both the young and old to bring anything from street bikes to choppers and take part in a 50/50 raffle.
There will also be a “Pink on Parade” walk-a-thon and health and wellness fair hosted by The Pink Ribbon Place held on Oct. 29 at Fairmount Park in Riverside.
Students like Razook are doing their part to help make a difference by bringing awareness to breast cancer.
This October, show solidarity by wearing a pink ribbon in memory of everyone who has lost loved ones to the terrible disease and to the many people it affects each year.