MIA runway 5K run raises $30,000+ for breast cancer research, closing out a successful Breast Cancer Awareness Month in South Florida

The fight against breast cancer in Miami-Dade County took off on Halloween day as more than 2,500 runners participated in the Miami International Airport Runway 5K Series on Oct. 31.

Aviation officials cleared the north runway for the runners in an effort to raise money for cancer research and raise awareness of the second leading cause of cancer death among US women.

October was Breast Cancer Awareness Month and millions of people, including cancer survivors, raised money to benefit the American Cancer Society, and to encourage women to get annual mammograms for early detection and diagnosis of the disease.

The MIA Runway 5K Series raised over $30,000, part of the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer campaign.

The inaugural MIA race was in October 2020, and the first Runway 5K at Miami-Opa Locka Executive Airport was in March 2022. Once all is totaled, this year’s 5K Series at MIA and OPF was expected to raise over $30,000 for the campaign.

“Cancer is a disease that has impacted all of us in one way or another, whether personally or through a family member, friend, or colleague,” said Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levin Cava. “I am so proud of all our Runway 5K participants and our Miami-Dade County employees who literally made strides against breast cancer today.”

Ralph Cutié, Miami-Dade Aviation Department Director and CEO, thanked the runners and the event's sponsors.

“It was an honor for us to host two races this year as part of our first Runway 5K Series,” he said. “We appreciate every single person and organization who ran or donated money and resources to make this year’s events a success.”

Miami-Dade County and the American Cancer Society launched the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 2022 campaign on October 6. County Commissioners Sally A. Heyman and Rebeca Sosa, both breast cancer survivors, were the faces of the campaign.

“This should be an initiative and a cause every day, any day, because the opportunity to find a cause like this – where we could legitimately have a cure – is so real,” said Heyman. “If we bring awareness, education, and money for research, it will make a difference… I am of sheer conviction that we can find a cure in our lifetime.”

Added Sosa: “To those who are going through the struggle of the discovery of breast cancer, treatments, and surgery, never give up. Never give up the hope that one day, the solution is going to come to light, and everyone is going to be able to survive.”

Over the past 24 years, Miami-Dade County, in partnership with the American Cancer Society, has raised over $3 million for breast cancer research.

With the combined donations from Miami-Dade County, the American Cancer Society was able to receive approval to name an active research grant. It was presented to Miami-Dade County in memory of Debbie Curtain, a former Miami-Dade County employee who lost her battle with breast cancer.

Sponsors and supporters for the MIA 5K series run included American Airlines, aviation partners Catalina Aerospace Corporation, Atlantic Aviation, Signature Flight Support, Spirit Airlines, LATAM Airlines, Silver Lining Inflight Services, and TYLin, and community partners Baptist Health Cancer Care, Wawa, Michelob Ultra, Saint James Organic Green Tea, and the Miami-Dade Parks, Recreation, and Open Spaces and Solid Waste Management departments.

La Boulangerie Boul'Mich

La Boulangerie Boul'Mich, shown here witjh Key Biscayne Police Department's DARE Pink cruiser, donated 10 percent of the October sales of its pastries and croissants to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

La Boulangerie Boul'Mich, which has a bakery in Key Biscayne and five other South Florida locations, is doing its part to raise money for breast cancer research, said Corinne Farkash Mizrahi, chief marketing officer.

Mizrahi said the French bakery, with a Latin twist, donated 10 percent of the October sales of its pastries and croissants to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

Mizrahi, whose grandmother was a breast cancer survivor, said the bakery donated $13,000. "We were excited that we raised that much money," she said.

"I'm very inspired with the work (Susan G. Komen Foundation),” said Mizrahi. "The foundation reaches out to the schools and the communities and does amazing work; and the bakery contributing to that is paramount."

According to BreastCancer.org, about 13% of US women will develop invasive breast cancer in the course of their lives. In 2022, an estimated 287,850 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed, along with 51,400 new cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer.


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