Light the Way to Find a Cure
How Every October Pink Light is a Breast Self-Exam Reminder
In October, breast cancer awareness is the goal of pink lights brightly illuminating 169 Chicago area buildings. Countless others support the cause by flying pink breast cancer awareness flags. It is all a part of Lynn Sage’s annual “Light the Way to Find a Cure” effort to remind Chicagoans about the importance of breast self-exams. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in adult women. But when detected early, 96 percent of women survive the disease.
“All of us at Lynn Sage have seen first-hand how the simple power of these pink lights has helped so many individuals remember the importance of self-exam. The lights save lives and we encourage every building in our area to light pink or fly a pink flag in October,” says Susan Silver, vice chair of the board of the Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation.
For Silver, lighting Chicago pink became intensely personal when, in October 2002, her sister-in-law noticed the pink lights illuminating the Chicago skyline during a night out with her husband and, reminded by the lights, later found a small lump while doing a self-exam. The lump was confirmed as cancer and removed without any further complications. “Cancer truly touches all of us and it was remarkable for the pink lights to touch my own sister-in-law and lead to early detection. It shows how important our efforts are to create breast cancer awareness, whether through lighted buildings, flags, groups walks and runs and the like,” says Silver.
In addition to pink lights and flags on buildings, for the first year a number of taxi companies – including Yellow, Checker and Blue Medallion cabs – also participated by posting stickers in their back windows.
“Ideally, our goal is to have every Chicago area building participate in some way each October. If we save just one more person, our efforts are worth it,” says Silver.
Buildings interested in participating can receive free consulting assistance from Lightswitch, a full-service lighting company, and Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation partner.
Buildings that cannot light pink can purchase and display pink Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation flags. Flags are available for purchase and range from $400 to $500 based on size. Custom flags also are available by request.
For more information on lighting a building pink or purchasing a flag, contact Emma Cowen at 312-926-4274 or firstname.lastname@example.org.