Baking and battling for tomorrow: A cancer survivor’s fight to help find a cure
LAHAINA – What does a cancer survivor look like? You, me, your neighbor, family member or a friend – it could be anyone.
Tanya Wick is the vibrant and very personable owner of Aloha Malasadas by Tanya in Lahaina. Her spirit is remarkable. Her sister, often at her side, also has a smile full of spirit, showcasing the heartfelt love between these siblings.
You might not know that not only is Wick a cancer survivor, but she is in fact a double survivor of different forms of cancer. She was first diagnosed in 1992 and then again in 2015.
She originally discovered Relay For Life while living in Oregon, where she and her family received support as they dealt with the disease.
She said the event provides a support network for those who are on their journey and battling this disease, and for caregivers offering support to those with cancer. Fellow relayers are open to communicate and feel like a family.
Funds raised at Relay For Life help fund research to find the cure for cancer, as well as provide resources to cancer patients on Maui. The American Cancer Society helps provide wigs, rides to treatment, free hotel stays, information and more to those battling cancer.
Wick strongly recommends that everyone become involved in some way with Relay For Life, whether you have the disease yourself, or a family member or someone you know has lost their battle. Community members can volunteer their time, give support or make a donation.
During the 2015 Relay For Life of West Maui, Wick started walking the track after midnight, and by the end of the event, she completed 263 laps. Sometimes, the lap is the victory.
For the 2016 Relay For Life of West Maui, Wick has started her first team in Hawaii: Aloha Malasadas by Tanya. Her booth and tent space will be carnival-themed with fun activities for the entire family, including jumping castles, games and lots of prizes. Tanya will also make fresh malasadas on the spot.
Relay For Life will be held from 6 p.m. on Saturday, July 16, until 6 a.m. on Sunday morning at Lahaina Recreation Center by the baseball fields.
The event will also feature entertainment, Zumba, a silent auction, games like limbo and tug of war, performances by Old Lahaina Luau and more, the Luminaria Ceremony at 10 p.m. and much more fun all night long.
Everyone must register to attend, including volunteers, walkers, survivors, family and friends. Go to www.RelayForLife.org/westmauihi to sign up.
For more information, contact Chelsea Katzeman at 244-5554 or Jackie Favors at 669-6595.