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The Quabbin Reservoir set to host Eighth Annual Walk of Champions

January 29, 2013

Michelle Holmgren, Public Affairs & Community Relations Specialist
(Office) 413-967-2296 (Cell) 413-237-6743

For Immediate Release

Ware, MA (January 28, 2013) - Sunday, May 5, marks the eighth annual Walk of Champions. Once again the Goodnough Dike area of the Quabbin Reservoir will be filled with hundreds of people walking in honor or in memory of loved ones affected by cancer, all with the determination to make a difference in those affected by the disease.
“Last year, a record 1200 walkers from area communities participated in the “Walk of Champions” which is held annually on the first Sunday in May to benefit cancer care services at Baystate Mary Lane Hospital,” said Lori Tuttle, RN, OCN, Program Manager of the Baystate Regional Cancer Program Oncology Satellite at Baystate Mary Lane Hospital. “Planning for the 2013 walk is underway and we are delighted that this year’s walk will once again include live music by Ware Paramedic, Christopher Gagnon, who will be on stage for a moving tribute to all who walk in honor or memory of those touched by cancer,” said Tuttle.
“Keeping cancer care local is important, and we are honored by the many area businesses that sponsor our walk and the hundreds of walkers who participate in the Walk of Champions,” said Chuck Gijanto, President of Baystate Regional Markets, which includes Baystate Mary Lane Hospital. “We are so fortunate in this region to be surrounded by a generous community. In 2012 more than 1,200 walkers raised $77,400, in an extraordinary show of support for friends, family members and neighbors who have been touched by cancer. Since 2006, the Walk of Champions has raised over $377,000. Funds raised through the Baystate Health Foundation and have been used to help family support counseling, educational outreach, pastoral care, medications and state-of-the-art equipment,” said Gijanto.

In September of 2012, the Baystate Regional Cancer Program at Baystate Mary Lane Hospital expanded and relocated its outpatient care and infusion services to a new space on the 4th floor of the hospital, formerly the Women & Infants Unit. In the expanded space, experts from the Baystate Regional Cancer Program at Baystate Medical Center provide convenient access to comprehensive cancer care, clinical trials and a multidisciplinary team approach to cancer care in Ware.
Now is the time to form a team and become involved in the 2013 Walk of Champions and help make a difference in the lives of people undergoing cancer treatment at
Baystate Mary Lane Hospital.

The Walk of Champions offers a 5 mile or 2 mile walk among the comfortable walking terrain of the Goodnough Dike. Along the walk route, there will be entertainment and refreshments among the peace and beauty of the Quabbin Reservoir. Country Bank for Savings is the presenting sponsor of the Walk of Champions, and is joined by local business including Heath New England, and Janine’s Frostee, in the commitment to
raise funds to benefit Integrated Cancer Services at Baystate Mary Lane Hospital.

Pledge forms are available for businesses, community organizations, and community members who are participating in the walk. Registration for the Walk, fundraising resources and more including online giving opportunities can be found on the Walk of Champions website at For more information about the Walk of Champions, or to find out how you can become involved, call Michelle Graci, Manager of Fund Raising Events BHF at (413) 794-7654 or by e-mail at