Austin Residents Walk Against Cancer

Posted at: 07/05/2013 10:24 PM
By: John Doetkott

 About a hundred people made their way to the Hormel Institute on Friday for the 3rd annual Walk for a Cancer Free World.

But the event was just as much about curing cancer, as it was preventing it.

The walk started with a quick warm up led by a YMCA instructor as part of the group's mission to educate people about the steps they can take to lower their risk of developing cancer.

“A lot of our research here is focused on food compounds, compounds you can find in fruits and vegetables,” said Tim Ruzek with The Hormel Institute. “It’s just part of exercising, having a healthy diet as big ways to reduce your risk of developing cancer."

As the walk began, Donna Dahl was near the head of the pack.

Dahl recently underwent treatment for cancer, and she said she's thankful for the institute's commitment to finding a cure.

“My treatment now compared to the treatment that they had a couple years ago is so much different,” Dahl said. “They've made so many strides. So it's nice to know that somebody's working hard for us."

That same work will continue at the institute's new $27 million facility, which recently received full funding from The Hormel Foundation.

It's a project that means more research, and more hope for survivors like Dahl.

“That’s terrific. It’s double the size, so that's wonderful,” Dahl said. “A lot more scientists for us, and they'll learn a lot more soon."

And while everyone awaits new cancer breakthroughs, for now, walkers focused on the simpler things.

“I’m going to get some exercise,” Dahl said laughing. “And a deep satisfaction of knowing that we did something good."