Local woman gets ready for 60-mile walk
May 03, 2012 | 991 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print

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At a glance

WHAT: Tammy Rodney, a participant in the Susan G. Komen San Francisco 3-Day for the Cure, is collecting donations for breast cancer research and education.

HOW TO HELP: Contributions may be made online at www.the3-day.org using Rodney’s name and her Participant ID, 6529736. For example, $35 could cover the cost of patient transportation for a treatment session or $120 could pay for a mammography screening.

Local woman gets ready for 60-mile walk

By Maddy Houk

Patterson Irrigator

Tammy Rodney, 41, of Patterson and her sister-in-law Cindy Anderson of Manteca have hosted yard sales, washed cars and run a host of other fundraisers to reach their goal of raising $2,300 each for the Susan G. Komen San Francisco 3-Day for the Cure.

During the three-day walk, Sept. 7 through 9, the women will complete a 60-mile trek around the Bay Area to raise money and raise awareness for breast cancer research and education programs.

Some of Rodney’s relatives are fighting cancer, such as her daughter’s grandmother and a couple of close friends, and others have succumbed to the disease.

“I’m walking for two reasons,” Rodney said. “First, my husband Byron’s mother passed away 10 years ago from complications of breast cancer. Second, I had weight-loss surgery in October 2011 and lost 72 pounds, so now I can walk.”

To get in condition to walk 20 miles three days in a row, Rodney works out, takes Zumba classes at Patterson Health & Fitness and uses a treadmill.

“I walk on the treadmill and just walk, walk and walk on the incline, because San Francisco has hills,” Rodney said.

She also lifts weights to build muscle.

Rodney explained that losing her extra weight had been a great help.

“I wasn’t able to bend over and tie my shoes without feeling like I was going to pass out,” Rodney said. “Now, I can get on the treadmill or the street, and I just walk. It’s not just a lazy walk — I walk fast, and it’s a huge difference.”

The route for September’s San Francisco 3-Day has not yet been determined, but friends and family can gather at cheering spots along the way to encourage the walkers. The public is also invited to the Sept. 9 closing ceremony.

Rodney’s friend Beth Reyna often exercises with her as she prepares for this fall’s event.

“I will be there at the finish line for her with open arms,” Reyna said.

Byron Rodney has been close to everything his wife has been going through and cheers her on.

“I can say with all my heart that I am so very, very proud of what she has already accomplished and what she has set for goals for herself,” he said. “Her excitement at being able to accomplish something like this that was never a possibility for her before — all the way to the people she’s doing the walk for, as well — has my heart and my pride both swelling big and shining bright.

“I lost my mother to cancer 10 years ago, and having her do this for her and the others is just, in my eyes, amazing and emotional, all wrapped into a big box of pride in my wife.”

He said he hoped local supporters would meet her at the finish line to celebrate not just his wife’s personal journey, but also those of the individuals for whom she is walking, which were cut short because of cancer.

In a quest to raise the more than $2,000 still needed, Tammy Rodney is offering to wear pink ribbons on her shirt bearing the names of people’s loved ones who have faced cancer. Each ribbon costs $5. Other fundraisers are being planned locally and will be announced at a later date.

• Contact Maddy Houk at 892-6187 or maddy@pattersonirrigator.com.

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