Cancer walk to honor departed, offer support to those in fight

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 30, 2016

SOUTH POINT — A cancer walk, set for June 4, will honor of a South Point alumni who died from a rare form of the disease in 2012, and will provide support to two people currently battling it.

John L. Casey Jr. was a 1991 graduate of South Point High.

“He was diagnosed six years ago with a rare cancer, adrenocortical carcinoma,” Alberta Casey, his mother said.

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John, who was working as a master barber in Charlotte, North Carolina at the time, had always been healthy up that point.

“When he told us, I thought he was playing,” Alberta said.

John’s cancer was a rare form, which only affected one in 7 million people in the world.

Prior to his death, the South Point community rallied to him, organizing benefits and offering support.

Now, four years later, an effort is being made to give back in his honor.

A cancer walk is scheduled for June 4 at 9:30 a.m. at the old South Point High School building.

Stacy Murray-Medcalf, the coordinator for The Cause, the nonprofit organizing the event, said she was approached by Alberta, who is her sister.

“She wanted to do something to give back,” she said.

In addition to the walk, there will be a memorial balloon release, set for 11 a.m., which Murray-Medcalf said is not limited just to those who died from cancer.

“We encourage anyone who has lost a loved one to participate,” she said.

There will be free health screening offered from Marshall University and King’s Daughters Medical Center, and raffles and a sale of baked goods and other items, with the proceeds to benefit Burlington Elementary teacher Beverly Osborne and student Aiden Matney, who are both fighting health challenges.

After the walk, Osborne, Matney and their families will be inside the school.

“We’ll be talking with them and allowing them to share their story,” Murray-Medcalf said.

Alberta said, while it was difficult at first, she’s now ready to take on this cause.

“I needed this,” she said. “It’s time. John was always helping people.”

For more information, contact Alberta Casey at 304-741-9979 or Stacy Murray-Medcalf, Coordinator for The Cause, Inc. at 740-646-3558.