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Relay recognized as second best in nation

When it comes to raising money for cancer research and education, McDuffie County continues to dominate.

This is the second year in a row that the McDuffie County Relay for Life has received an award for raising the second highest amount in the country for communities of similar size.

The American Cancer Society also awarded the McDuffie relay with first place in the Southeast U.S. Division.

"We were number one here by far," said Relay Co-Chair and Thomson Mayor Bob Knox of the raising the most money in the southeastern quadrant of the country. "There was nobody close. I think the next closest one was $7.80 per capita."

The $235,305 raised during this year's event represents $10.90 for every person in the county. That's up from $10.30 per capita from last year.

Organizers said the consistently high dollar figures are due to the community's caring attitude.

"It says (residents) are very caring and generous, and if there's a very worthwhile project involved, folks here are willing to get behind it and do right by it," Mayor Knox said.

The McDuffie relay won first place in the country three years ago and has come in second to Carroll County, I.A. for the past two years.

That relay raised $236,000 this year - only $695 more than McDuffie County - which equated to $11.24 per capita.

"We've had a big competition with them for the past three years," Mayor Knox said. "...So hopefully we'll beat them again next year. It's a good friendly competition and a good way to have it."

Relay organizers will meet in January to set a fundraising goal and begin planning for the 2007 event. Anyone wanting to participate in next year's relay can contact Mayor Knox or Co-Chair Peggy Willis.

Web posted on Thursday, November 16, 2006

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