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September 27, 2007

U-M candle lighting event remembers those who have died from cancer

ANN ARBOR, MI – Losing a loved one to cancer is painful and difficult. On this special evening, families can share their grief in a celebration of lives lost to cancer.

Candle Lighting The University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center will hold its 10th annual Candle Lighting for Hope and Remembrance on Saturday, Oct. 6. The ceremony is designed to celebrate the lives of those who have died and bring hope to their families and loved ones.

The event is open to anyone who has lost a lost a loved one to cancer or a blood disorder. The ceremony, which is free and open to the public, begins at 7 p.m., with resources and refreshments available beginning at 6 p.m., all under the front entrance canopy of the Cancer Center, 1500 E. Medical Center Drive, Ann Arbor.

“Loving and caring for someone with cancer requires many acts of courage and strength not only on the part of the patient, but also on the part of their family. Through the comments of the speakers and the evening’s activities, we hope to help those in grief examine avenues of hope and healing. This year’s focus is to look at the colors of hope and healing in grief and the many ways individuals move through grief knowing that no one way is the best,” says Susan Wintermeyer-Pingel, coordinator of the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Grief & Loss Program.

The event brings families, staff, faculty and volunteers together to light candles and to commemorate those individuals lost. The evening also includes comments and readings from family members, faculty and staff who have experienced a loss and music from various artists and local choral groups. Participants are encouraged to bring photos or mementoes of their loved one, which will be gathered for a group display.

“It’s still very painful for those who have lost someone. We hope to give individuals a supportive hand giving them a little more strength to go on, to validate that person and tell them it’s OK to grieve,” Wintermeyer-Pingel says.

Registration is encouraged and free parking is available for this community-wide event. Please feel free to attend even if your loved one did not receive medical care at the University of Michigan. For more information or to register, call the U-M Cancer AnswerLine at 800-865-1125 or go to  

Written by Nicole Fawcett


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