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CNYers encouraged to kick-off July 4th with ovarian cancer awareness

 Picture of a sign about the Teal There's a Cure sign
Teal There's A Cure Facebook Page
A lawn sign of the "Teal There's a Cure" 5k run/walk for ovarian cancer.

Most Central New Yorkers might spend the 4th of July having cookouts or setting off fireworks. But one organization is hoping people kick off the holiday by raising awareness for ovarian cancer. This year marks the 15th annual and possibly last “Teal There’s a Cure” 5K Walk/Run in Marcellus.

The run/walk was started back in 2009 by the O’Hara family to educate people about ovarian cancer and raise awareness about the disease. The race was renamed after Maureen T. O’Hara “Teal There’s a Cure” 5k run/walk in 2015 after Maureen passed due to ovarian cancer one week after the 2012 event.

Kim Mathieson joined the committee about 11 years ago after her mother survived late stage ovarian cancer.

"The race had been going on for three years. But I didn't even really pay attention to it, even though I'm a local resident, because I guess it didn't touch my life," Mathieson said. "And after that, I realized that ovarian cancer is such a low survival rate, because there is no screening for it. And most women that are diagnosed are diagnosed in a very late stage”

Mathieson says that’s because most of the symptoms are not out of the ordinary, and might be part of the reason why the survival rate is only 30 percent. She says her mother experienced bloating, weight gain in the stomach, and feeling full.

Ovarian cancer is sometimes called "the silent killer," and is the fifth leading cause of cancer-related deaths in women.

Mathieson says the organization has raised more than $461,000 over the past 14 years for ovarian cancer research, awareness and education.

"Last year, we raised $25,000. And we gave it to Upstate Medical University Foundation," Mathieson said. "Most of our money stays right here at the Upstate Cancer Center, or we give to the Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance.”

Registration is open here until noon on July 3. But people can register in person the day of the event on July 4th. There’s also a virtual option. The walk/run starts at 8am at Marcellus Park followed by an award ceremony.

Morgan Caviness is an undergraduate student who just earned her associates degree at Onondaga Community College for Broadcast Media and Communications and plans to continue studying Broadcast and Mass Communication at SUNY Oswego where she is expected to graduate May of 2025. As a student contributor at WAER, Morgan helps produce digital radio stories.
Scott Willis covers politics, local government, transportation, and arts and culture for WAER. He came to Syracuse from Detroit in 2001, where he began his career in radio as an intern and freelance reporter. Scott is honored and privileged to bring the day’s news and in-depth feature reporting to WAER’s dedicated and generous listeners. You can find him on twitter @swillisWAER and email him at