Light the Night Walk 2017


Pictured is the City of Kendallville team preparing to walk aside Mayor Handshoe in the Light the Night walk.

“When we walk, cancer runs.”

For 21 consecutive years, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Northeast Indiana held the annual Light the Night walk at East Noble High School on Tuesday, Sept. 26. Citizens of Kendallville and surrounding areas congregated to raise awareness on cancer, raise funds for treatments and raise hope for those who are suffering and those who lost loved ones to the disease.

Before the ceremony and walk began, booths and vendors set up on the west side of the High School building, providing games, food and refreshments. Key Club, IMPACT Culinary Arts students, and Livestrong via YMCA were among the crowd.

Corporate and independent groups were formed beforehand in the hopes to raise money for the event. Top fundraisers of the night included Nancy Muesing Sible, The Coffee Group, and the City of Kendallville, all raising an impressive $26,645.23 combined. This money will benefit the program’s mission of “curing leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.”

The ceremony began with Kendallville’s very own Fred Inniger, a personality on 95.5 FM The Hawk. Not only did he cover the event live on the radio, but he also announced speakers of the night.

First was East Noble junior and show choir member Desiree Woody, who belted out the patriotic tune of the National Anthem. The stage was then joined by English teacher Matthew Rickey, who announced the teams of walkers and who they were walking in remembrance of.

What was special about this year was our very own beloved Suzanne Handshoe, Mayor of Kendallville, was the selected 2017 honored hero of Northeast Indiana. Handshoe was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma on Feb. 26, 2016, where she then underwent fourteen weeks of chemotherapy and has been in remission since her “successful” stem cell transplant. She gave a short oratory in which she compellingly mentioned that everyone has been affected by or knows someone who has suffered from cancer.

“I promised I would be an advocate for my disease,” she said, in regards to her presence that night. Handshoe then went on to explain that LLS is a “wonderful” organization, that helps families who have financial need and allows them to access medications and new treatment options at their will.

“Cancer has touched everyone, whether it is personally, family, a loved one or a co-worker. We need to find a cure!”

The walk began at 7:15 p.m. as walkers were guided by the East Noble Marching Knights, marching to the tune of Moana’s “You’re Welcome.” The football team also joined in on the fun.

The walkers traveled west on Lisle street, north on Main street, west on Diamond street and south on Sherman street, making a loop back to the high school. The walk was roughly 1.8 miles long. The event ended as the sun set and participants were greeted with Dairy Queen Dilly bars and cold water provided by foreign exchange students.