Rooftop For Cancer Relay At Randy’s

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She’s a small town girl, but she’s got a big heart and an even a bigger plan to help raise money for cancer research.

Betty Jean Wallace, known as BJ to her friends and neighbors in Alexander, plans to sit atop the roof of the only general store in her town to raise money for the American Cancer Society’s annual Relay for Life and to raise awareness of the high rates of cancer in Washington County. 

Carl and Rhonda Oakes, owners of Randy’s Variety in Alexander, agreed to allow Wallace to post herself on their roof to help Wallace raise the cancer research funds. 

Wallace is the captain of her Alexander Relay 4-A Cure team and hopes that she and her crew can raise a substantial amount of money for this year’s cancer walk. 

“This cause is important to me,’ Wallace said. “My mother in law Linda had a double mastectomy, my grandfather is going through cancer treatment right now, my grandmother and my brother in law lost their battle with cancer, and my uncle was also diagnosed with cancer. It’s just crazy,” she added.

“I sat down recently and made a list of people I know that cancer has touched. I then added to the list all acquaintances affected by cancer. It was quite lengthy. It was then that I figured I’d torture myself for a day in an effort to try and help,” Wallace said. 

The Alexander resident is not alone in her frustration with cancer rates in Washington County. Cancer rates including prostate, lung and colorectal are highest in Washington County. A Community Health Assessment conducted in 2010 lists Maine has having the highest cancer rates in the country. 

“…all rates of cancers are highest in Washington County,” says Janet Hock, director of the Maine Institute for Human Genetics and Health, headquartered in Brewer. “It’s not simply that you live in an area with high radon or lead in the water. It’s far more complex. It’s the interplay between genes and the environment,” Hock said.

Wallace will be on the Randy’s Variety roof on April 17th from 9:00 am until 6:00 p.m. rain or shine. Randy’s is located on Route 9 in Alexander. 

If you would like to make a donation to Wallace’s rooftop project, you can drop off your donation at the Alexander Elementary School during school hours, or mail a check payable to the American Cancer Society to the school. The address is: Alexander Elementary School, 1430 Airline Road, Alexander, ME 04694.

 “If I raise $50 it will be great, if I raise $500 that will be even greater, but my goal is $5,000,” Wallace said.  













The annual Relay For Life for the St. Croix Valley begins Saturday, June 15, 2013 6:00PM at the Washington County Community College in Calais. Relay For Life is an American Cancer Society fundraiser. This overnight event joins communities in the fight against cancer. It is a way to celebrate cancer survivors, remember loved ones, and fight back against a disease that takes too much from too many. You can learn more at or, or by calling 1.800.227.2345.