Annual Survivor Run raises awareness

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Neighbors | Abby Slanker.Participants in the fourth annual Survivor Run at Buckeye Horse Farm got into the spirit of the day by dressing in pink and wearing Derby hats to show their support of breast cancer survivor Sallie Sullivan before hitting the trail on Sept. 30.

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Neighbors | Abby Slanker.A rider readied her horses, decked out in pink, to hit the trail at Buckeye Horse Farm to participate in the fourth annual Survivor Run on Sept. 30.

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Neighbors | Abby Slanker.Sallie Sullivan (right), a breast cancer survivor, and her daughter, Megan Hruska, were joined by Sullivan’s puppy, Penny, while decked out in pink, and sporting their finest ‘Derby’ hats in support of the fourth annual Survivor Run Hruska organized to honor her mother and other breast cancer survivors and to help spread awareness of early breast cancer detection on Sept. 30.

By ABBY SLANKER

neighbors@vindy.com

The fourth annual Survivor Run, organized by Megan Hruska, took place at Buckeye Horse Park on Sept. 30.

Hruska, a life-long horse enthusiast, started the Survivor Run in honor of breast cancer survivors, including her mother Sallie Sullivan.

“My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer October of 2013, and her recent diagnosis revealed her cancer has spread to her bones and now to her liver. This year’s theme at Survivor Run is the ‘Derby.’ Friends and family voted online earlier this year to have her entered into a contest to fulfill an amazing bucket list item. My mom and dad won tickets to the Kentucky Oaks and friends and family helped me get them tickets to the Kentucky Derby this past May,” Hruska said.

The Survivor Run consisted of a six-mile trail ride and a 12-mile trail ride to help spread awareness of early breast cancer detection and to get others involved in Sullivan’s passion for riding.

Approximately 40 riders, decked out in pink and some in elaborate Derby hats, participated in this year’s Survivor Run. Not only were the riders and volunteers deck out in pink, but the horses were too, with pink manes, pink tails, pink ribbons and pink blankets.

“This event is to bring awareness to early detection and to share the love and passion my mother has for competitive trail riding. We also want to expose young riders to the sport so they can keep it going. We weren’t really focusing on raising money, but last year, thanks to our riders and generous donations, we raised $2,000 for the Joanie Abdu Comprehensive Breast Care Center to support Joanie’s Promise Fund, which is my mother’s treatment center. This year’s proceeds will also be donated to the center,” Hruska said.

The event also featured a Chinese auction, with donations from members of the riding community.

“Donations for the Chinese auction just poured in from our rider community. They have been so generous with their support and we thank them for that,” Hruska said.

Hruska said early detection is key in battling breast cancer.

“We want people to be aware about early detection. Everyone needs to be checked yearly. The sooner you are checked the easier it is to treat,” Hruska said.

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