AYDEN, N.C. (WNCT) — One woman is working to make sure communities across Eastern North Carolina are aware of the ways to help battle cancer.
It’s not just any normal walk, it’s a way for communities to get together for a greater purpose. That’s what one Virginia woman, originally from Ayden, is saying after her family has had generations experiencing cancer that they are fighting to end.
“It’s not just one particular cancer it’s all cancer.”Tammie Sykes, Event Coordinator
This year approximately 1.9 million people will be diagnosed with cancer according to the National Cancer Institute. That number is too big for Tammie Sykes.
“I wanted to continue to do something in my roots, in my hometown.”
That’s when Sykes knew she wanted to make a difference. She began an awareness walk back in 2015 with the purpose to honor those who have won, lost, or are still fighting their battle with cancer. Some of those people include multiple family members of her own.
“In the past three years my husband found out that he had cancer and he had pancreatic cancer, so this has really been a big part of my life.”Tammie Sykes
In addition to the walk, Sykes is honoring an old friend of hers, Bishop Kenneth Joyner, with a motorcycle ride that he started at the 2016 walk. He has since passed, she feels it’s a way to keep continue his legacy. Noting that with all of the plans they have for the walk, she expects a pretty major crowd.
“So many people have reached out, but I can tell you my minimum is 500. I don’t know what my max is going to be, but my minimum is 500,” said Sykes.
The walk is planned to start at 9 AM at Zion Chapel Free Will Baptist in Ayden on September 18. Sykes says she is ready to get back to hosting this walk that’s changed her and her families’ lives.