Montgomery Women's Facility Holds Relay for Life


By Jessica Gertler

Cancer can strike anyone at any time. Some victims are battling the disease behind bars. On Saturday, the Montgomery Women's Facility is holding an American Cancer Society Relay for Life for its inmates.

"When you least expect it. I never thought I would be hit with cancer," says inmate Rebecca Peppers.

Peppers has been an inmate at the Montgomery Women's Facility for two and a half years. During that time, she was hit with her greatest life challenge. Peppers was diagnosed with thyroid and cervical cancer.

"It's tough, because you do it without your family.," she says. "You do what you can in here to stay positive with God and everything."

Peppers is one of 150 inmates who will be walking in the facility's first-ever Relay for Life this Saturday. The event will be held on the facility's dirt track. Peppers says all five inmates who have cancer are participating.

"These women are human. We are human, and no matter what, no one deserves cancer," says Melody Kitchen who is an American Cancer Society volunteer.

Kitchen is organizing the event. She says several inmates have family members battling the disease.

"Having had cancer, I have had support from my family and still have support from my family," she says. "I can't imagine being told a family member has cancer and not being able to hug them."

The walk will last three hours if the rain holds off. Kitchen says there is no fundraising involved, and family members can't participate.

But Peppers says she's happy she gets a chance to stand-up to the disease.

"Stay strong, stay positive and God can bring you through anything. Just keep your spirits up," she says.

Peppers says she will still have to go through radiation when she gets out, and says she has had great support from fellow inmates.

Organizers say if the event is successful, they hope to have it for years to come.

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