The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

Local News

June 4, 2014

Efforts underway to form Purple Stride group

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 — For those in Stanly County that have been affected by pancreatic cancer, now is your chance to leave a mark.

Efforts are underway to organize a local team to participate in the Charlotte affiliate of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and its PurpleStride. With a motto of “Know It. Fight It. End It,” the organization focuses on raising awareness and promoting increased research for the deadly disease.

The surviving family of Danny L. Almond is spearheading the effort to form a team in Stanly. Almond died of pancreatic cancer in late 2009, at the age of 53.

Almond’s experience with the disease was typical and further illustrates why so many die of the disease.

“Danny started having pain in the stomach area,” his wife, Cindy Almond, said.

“When we went to the doctor they thought it might be his gall bladder or acid reflux.”

Pancreatic cancer is difficult to detect. By the time doctors pinpoint the problem, the cancer is too far progressed and the prognosis grim.

That’s what happened to Danny.

While Danny complained of stomach pain, the symptoms can be more vague, prompting victims to ignore treatment.

Victims can also suffer back pain, jaundice, loss of appetite, nausea, and weight loss, as did Danny.“When we got the news, we were in shock,” Almond said.

“We decided to fight. We said ‘what can we do.’ We started looking on the Internet, which was not the best thing to do.”

It was then the harsh reality struck that pancreatic cancer is akin to a death sentence.

Pancreatic cancer has the highest mortality rate of all major cancers. Its survival rate has not significantly improved over the last 40 years.

“There is only a 6 percent survival rate,” Holly Patz, event coordinator for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, said.

“Our goal is to double that survival rate by 2020.”

Victims often die because there are no detection tools to diagnose the disease during the cancer’s early stages when surgical removal of the tumor is still possible. By the time the tumors are discovered, the cancer has typically spread to other organs like the liver.

“There are survivors. There’s not many. But, it’s about getting the research,” said Almond, talking about how the bleakness of the cancer impacts support.

The pancreas is a 6-inch long organ located behind the stomach in the back of the abdomen.

The pancreas contains exocrine and endocrine glands that create pancreatic juices, hormones, and insulin. Pancreatic juices, or enzymes, made by the exocrine glands are released into the intestines by way of a series of ducts in order to help digest fat, proteins, and carbohydrates.

Little has advanced about the cause or risk factors of pancreatic cancer. Smoking, excess weight, family history, and diabetes are cited as risk factors.

In terms of research funding, pancreatic cancer ranks well below other cancers.

Network organizers hope to change that with its annual event. In September, the group will hold its third annual PurpleStride 5K Run & Family-Friendly Walk in Charlotte as a way to promote awareness and raise money for additional research. After a modest beginning, the event continues to grow.

“Our first year we only had 640 participants, last year we had 1,100,” Patz said.

As many as 1,500 are expected to participate this year.

The Network’s Charlotte affiliation is one of only two in the state (Raleigh) to promote awareness for pancreatic cancer. Its volunteer driven to ensure donations go toward research.

Stanly County figures to be a player in its growth. An informational meeting will be held about forming a local team at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Sleep Inn in the meeting room.

For information, contact Amber Almond Reynolds at aareynolds@carolina. rr.com or (704) 986-0781.

To submit story ideas, contact Ritchie Starnes at (704) 982-2121 ext. 28 or email ritchie@stanlynewspress.com.



 

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Mission team heads to Ukraine

    A team from First Baptist Church of Midland left July 26 for Pyloypovychi, a small village in western Ukraine, near Novograd-Volinsky, near the border of Belarus.

    July 30, 2014

  • Police ready for night out

    Expect a swarm of cops at Roosevelt Ingram Park.
    No, there is no trouble brewing. Aug. 5 marks the annual National Night Out when police officers converge with their respective communities as part of an effort to strengthen relations between law enforcement officers and the public they serve.

    July 30, 2014

  • Eagle Scout Award Stanfield Scout receives Eagle rank

    Wade Mullins of Boy Scout Troop 27 in Stanfield recently earned his Eagle Scout, the highest rank attainable in the Boy Scouts of America program.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wool Pool Wool pool draws farmers near, far

    “Yes, sir, yes, sir. Three bags full,” goes “Baa, Baa, Black Sheep,” the children’s nursery rhyme. Various bags of wool were assembled in Stanly County this week.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Police chief resigns

    Stanfield is on the lookout for someone to lead its Police Department following the July 18 resignation of Chief James Schneider. Officer Corie Faggart has been named interim chief while the town seeks interviewees for the post.

    July 28, 2014

  • 24-27 back on list

    After an outpouring of public comment on the N.C. Highway 24-27 project,  the N.C. Department of Transportation says it may have a chance at funding once again.

    July 28, 2014

  • Youth Choir State youth choir shares message in scripture, song

    They came, they sang, they shared a message.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lending A Hand Red Cross, YMCA discuss emergency preparedness

    They may not be in the Coast Guard, or even in the Boy Scouts, but the kids at this year’s YMCA camp can now say they follow the same motto: always be prepared.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dragon Boat Resident wants to bring boat races to Stanly

    Ann Pressly is not ripping herself off with the idea of bringing dragon boat racing to Stanly County. She is just taking advantage of a good thing and something that is gaining in popularity.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • School board hopeful files to oppose Poole

    District 1 Board of Education member Melvin Poole has something he has not had since 1998, an opponent.

    July 21, 2014

House Ads
Seasonal Content
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide