Pink Up The Pace 2014

Pink Up The Pace 2014

Two Local Heroes *Never Give Up*

On Saturday when the sun rose over St Augustine, along with the morning sky, the color pink also graced the thousand of participants anticipating the start of the Sixth Annual Pink Up The Pace (PUTP) Race for Breast Cancer. The weather was perfect for the run / walk with the temperatures in the 60’s and throngs of people saved this date to publicly celebrate life, honor those who fought the battle and to remember those we lost. “This town has been very compassionate and supportive in regards to our event. We are very grateful. Our success has been due to the wonderful board and volunteers I have and have had and the fact that our cause unfortunately touches so many people in one way or another.” said Cindy Chaconas, PUTP founder. Saturday was the day for everyone to make the statement …You are not alone in this battle! We stand by you!

Pink Up The Pace 2014

Crazy Pink!

You could truly feel the love and support all around as this group of dedicated volunteers and supporters got ready to hit the street. People of all ages wore the international color pink to honor those affected by Breast Cancer. To say the costumes were outrageous was an understatement. Along with pink tee shirts there were pink boa’s, pink wigs & wings, pink hats, pink tutus, pink tights, pink babies rolling in pink strollers and dogs in pink dresses.  They all got in on the fun. To top it off, even a pink firetruck graced the field. With one in eight women affected by this horrific disease, every single person that graced Francis Field was touched by Breast Cancer in one way or another.

Pink Up The Pace 2014

Flagler Girls Helping Out

Pink Up The Pace began in 2009 after two young ladies; Cindy Chaconas, (age 28 at the time) and Amy Kaelin(age 36) were completing breast cancer treatment. The two met while undergoing treatments. Ironically, Cindy’s mother was also diagnosed with breast cancer right after her daughter. Unfortunately, her mother did not have any health insurance and Cindy was able to see first hand how financially devastating that can be.

Both Cindy and Amy worked in the healthcare field and knew that the earlier you catch the cancer the better chance of survival. After seeing what others less fortunate had to go through to get treatment or even be diagnosed, Cindy turned to Amy and said that something had to be done to help those less fortunate. The two came together and Pink Up The Pace was founded as a way to raise money to help fund imaging services to detect breast cancer. “Our mission is to have a positive impact on the lives of those affected by breast cancer in St. Augustine and the surrounding areas.” said Chaconas. “The money raised is to assist the uninsured and under insured in the early detection of breast cancer and increase public awareness of the importance of early detection.” she continued.

Pink Up The Pace is a not for profit organization. In the past six years they have raised over $100,000 to help our local community. With partnerships between The Pink Up The Pace Organization and local imaging centers and Flagler Hospital special pricing has been arranged to make sure PUTP is there to help everyone who fits the criteria so no one is turned away. As we all should know by now, early detection saves lives. “Know your bodies from head to toe whether it’s freckles, lumps,scars, differences between one side of your body and the other.” explained Cindy. “We need to take the initiative and command of our bodies as no one will know that better than themselves.” Listen to that little voice inside of you. If you feel something is wrong see a doctor and continue until you feel things have been taken care of.

As the morning came to a close and the day wore on, pink was the color of the day. At restaurants, stores and throughout town Saturday we were reminded of the message of the day. Thanks to Cindy, Amy and the volunteers who remind us everyday that we will continue to fight until a cure is finally found!  No one deserves to be turned away…after all, it is a matter of life and death!

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