Over 4,000 take part in 26th annual Vince Lombardi Cancer Walk

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Over 4,000 runners and walkers participated in the 26th annual Vince Lombardi Cancer Walk on Saturday, June 8th at the Milwaukee County Zoo.

"It's exciting! There's a ton of energy out here. People truly care and want to do something to make a difference," said Aurora Health Care Foundation President Cristy Garcia-Thomas.

Participants gather each year to raise money for cancer research.

"These people have been touched and they want to touch each other. They want to support each other," said former Packers player Santana Dotson. "They're excited because I'm here and I'm excited to see them and the energy that they're putting out into the universe."

Organizers set a goal this year to raise $180,000. Cancer survivor Dick Parkhurst says he knows the value of those donations.

"Those monies go to research, and the research gives us options for treatment, and I had options and I'm a survivor, eight years," said Parkhurst.

Participant Carrie Pietrzykowski added, "There are so many survivors out there and so many people are taking this head on and I'm just glad to be a part of it."

As of Friday evening, June 7th, the walk had raised over $204,000.