April 23, 2003

Jerry Coleman to Emcee 10th Annual Gorder Walk

Jerry Coleman

Walkers of all ages and fitness levels are invited to join Jerry Coleman, voice of the San Diego Padres, for the 10th annual Bruce Brunner Gorder Memorial Melanoma Walk-a-thon, scheduled for May 31. In addition to serving as emcee for the event, Coleman will provide color commentary during the 5K walk that traverses the scenic UCSD campus in La Jolla.

This family-oriented walk raises funds to support melanoma research, treatment and education at the Rebecca and John Moores UCSD Cancer Center. This year, event organizers have set a goal to raise $100,000.

The walk is organized by UCSD Cancer Center Foundation Board member Charles F. Gorder, Sr. as a tribute to the memory of his son, Bruce, who succumbed to melanoma at age 37.

"My son battled melanoma for years, but lost his fight in 1992, leaving behind his widow, Vicki, and his daughter, Gabrielle," Gorder said. "His family, many friends and other supporters are committed to doing all that we can to help find the cure for melanoma. We hope others will join us in this cause."

Malignant melanoma is one of the most virulent and deadly types of cancer. It is one of only two major cancers increasing in incidence in the United States, and it is increasing rapidly. In 1935, lifetime risk for developing melanoma was one in 1500 among Caucasians; today, the rate has skyrocketed to one in 75. This year, approximately 48,000 new cases of melanoma will be diagnosed in the United States; in San Diego alone there will be approximately 250 new cases.

The Walk-a-thon begins at 8:30 a.m. with registration and free refreshments on the UCSD School of Medicine campus. Following the walk, Jerry Coleman will lead the program, which will include gifts for participants, prize drawings, skin cancer screenings, and education about prevention and early detection. There is no registration fee, but donations, which are entirely tax deductible, are gratefully accepted.

Each year, Gorder matches the first $25,000 raised by this event. Since its inception, the Gorder Walk has raised over $625,000.

For details, contact the UCSD Cancer Center Foundation office at 858-822-0175.

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News Media Contact:
Nancy Stringer

UCSD Health Sciences Communications HealthBeat: http://health.ucsd.edu/news/