Supporters kick off Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- It's the most common cancer among women in the United States, but the number of breast cancer survivors is higher than ever.

On Wednesday, March 6th, a kickoff breakfast was held for the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event.  More than 400 breast cancer survivors and supporters attended the breakfast at the Italian Conference Center.

FOX6's Mary Stoker-Smith was the emcee.

“We can all think of somebody in our lives who has been affected, and that makes this fight that much more personal and that much more important,” Stoker-Smith said.

Making Strides is a 5k walk held in May to raise awareness and money to fight breast cancer.  The name itself describes the progress being made to end the disease.

“I think it really shows the impact that we're having both on the field of research and what we're doing to cure the disease,” Shari Henning, ACS’s Vice-President of Annual Giving said.

There is, however more work to be done.  In Wisconsin alone, 4,200 women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year.

“It's a routine mammogram that saved my life,” Margaret Welch said.

Welch was diagnosed a year-and-a-half ago, but can call herself a survivor thanks to the services provided by the organization.

“I'm just so grateful for that mammogram because I had absolutely no signs or symptoms of it, and that's the only way it would've been caught,” Welch said.

Last year, more than $452,000 was raised at the Making Strides event to help continue those services to women and the hope is to continue that journey to end breast cancer, starting with a single step.

“One in two women contact us when they're newly diagnosed,” Henning said.

Kohl's Cares is the presenting sponsor for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer.  FOX6 is proud to once again be the media sponsor.

The annual 5k walk will be held Saturday, May 4th at Veterans Park.