Cancer survivors prepare to take walk of their lives at 2018 Kentucky Oaks Survivors Parade

See how you can help raise awareness and support breast cancer screenings for women in our community

On Friday, May 4, an impressive field of fast fillies will take the track at Churchill Downs for the running of the 144th Longines Kentucky Oaks. Just before the horses are called to post, another much-loved tradition will take place as 144 brave individuals walk the historic track in a moving ceremony to celebrate their fight against breast and ovarian cancer.

It’s all part of this year’s Pink Out celebration, highlighted by the Kentucky Oaks Survivors Parade presented by Kroger. This year’s walkers were selected once again by public vote. They will be joined by the following women who walk to represent Norton Cancer Institute and Derby Divas, a volunteer group that raises funds for breast health programs and services for women in our community who lack access to them.

  • Sharon Elsesser
  • Tina Griffith
  • Paula Miller
  • Edie Wooten

These four cancer survivors work in various ways to volunteer, inspire, advocate, share their stories and lead the way in promoting breast cancer screenings and other key community health programs.

Meet all of the 2018 parade participants.

Over the past nine years, the Pink Out and Survivors Parade have raised $845,000 for cancer survivors. As part of a three-year partnership announced this spring by Churchill Downs, Derby Divas and Norton Cancer Institute, proceeds from the annual Oaks Pink Out will support the Norton Cancer Institute Breast Health Program. In addition, for the next three years, $1 from every Oaks Lily drink sold (up to $30,000) will support breast health programs, services and research.

This year’s donation will be used to help renovate the Norton Healthcare Mobile Prevention Center, which provides free screening services to women age 40 and older in Jefferson and surrounding counties in Kentucky. One key upgrade will be adding 3-D mammography technology to the mobile unit.


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