PAWTUCKET - The City of Pawtucket, in conjunction with the Gloria Gemma Foundation, will be lighting the Mayor James E. Doyle Pawtucket River Bridge pink during the month of October in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness month. The bridge, which carries I-95 over the Seekonk River, will be lit to promote awareness of breast cancer both in Pawtucket and throughout Rhode Island.
"The high incidence rate of breast cancer in the state necessitates action", said Pawtucket Mayor Donald R. Grebien. "This is why we are proud to partner with the Gloria Gemma Foundation to help spread the word about breast cancer in Southern New England. Tens of thousands of people drive over the Pawtucket River Bridge every day, and if we can use the bridge lighting to convince even a few people daily to receive testing or have a loved one get tested, we can consider this to a be success."
With 43,000 cancer survivors in Rhode Island or 4-percent of the state's population, programs and services like those offered by the Foundation are greatly needed.
"The number of cancer survivors is growing every year due to advancements in treatments, better screening methods and earlier detection," said Maureen DiPiero, Education and Outreach Manager for the foundation.
The Flames of Hope: A Celebration of Life Weekend that occurred on September 29-30 in downtown Providence is the largest breast cancer awareness event in the northeast, and it includes the Gloria Gemma Run-Walk Series that consists of three different races, including the Pink Pump Palooza, a 50-yard dash run in high heels by men and women, and a race Mayor Grebien has run in the past and challenged mayors from other Rhode Island cities and towns to participate.
"Lighting the bridge pink is another way to promote awareness," said DiPiero.
The bridge will be fully lit every day in October with the exception of the 5th through the 7th, when it will be lit green and red in honor of the Portuguese Social Club's 100th Anniversary. The City of Pawtucket, Mayor Grebien, and the Gloria Gemma Foundation would also like to use this opportunity to recommend that all women 40 and older receive annual mammograms screenings.
- Mayor Donald R. Grebien