BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Relay For Life is back in person this year. For people like Ron Holbert, it’s a big deal.
"As a cancer survivor myself, it's just rewarding to see others going through what you’re going through," he said.
A cancer survivor himself.
Ron got involved with Relay For Life years ago in honor of his father-in-law who lost his life to a brain tumor.
But then in 2018 and 2019, Ron was diagnosed with cancer three different times. He said what he had learned by attending Relay taught him the signs to look for.
“I'm a firm believer in early detection. If you think you have an issue, go find out if you have do an issue. It’s better to fight it at the start than it is at the end," he said.
Thankfully, the cancer was caught early each time and Ron won each battle. But it was still tough and he says being a part of Relay For Life made a huge difference.
“Once I was diagnosed, I had a support group that I already knew to lean on and talk to and ask questions," said Ron.
And now he’s a supporter for people facing the same challenges.
“Now that I've been through it, I have people now that are coming to me and saying, ‘Can I get some advice from you?" he said.
This year, Ron is on the Logistics Committee. He and his team are working hard at the Kern County fairgrounds to get everything ready for the 2022 Relay For Life happening this weekend, May 7-8.
He said the support the community has always shown is touching, and he can’t wait to see the event bounce back from the pandemic this year.
“Of course Bakersfield and Kern County rallies around everything. It’s amazing. I mean, over all the years I've been in Relay, I saw it from its beginning when we had twelve teams to the highlight when we had 400 teams," he said.
Ron encourages everyone to attend, whether they can volunteer, donate or just show up and listen.
He sure is glad he did.
“It may come around and help save your life down the road," he said.
Ron said they could use some help setting up during the week.
Call (661) 324-1359 for details on volunteering with them, or click here for details on how to attend the event this weekend.