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Wilton Family Running for Late Wife and Mom

For Steve Kalin of Wilton and his children, Will, 11, and Maddy, 8, the Whittingham Cancer Center's annual walk and run Saturday is sure to be bittersweet. It was just last June that Kalin's wife, Sally, died at age 44 after battling breast cancer for nearly nine years.

As a result, this year's event, which is being held at Calf Pasture Beach in Norwalk, has been named "Sally's Run." "We were always amazed by the wonderful, compassionate care Sally received at Norwalk Hospital," Kalin said. "To celebrate Sally's legacy, we chose to name the run in her honor and help raise funding for the (Whittingham) Cancer Center. They did an amazing job for our family, and it's a great way to give back."

Kalin said he will be running along with his children. "I sure can't walk in an event called 'Sally's Run,'" he said. ""The kids are really looking forward to the run and excited about honoring their mom in such a meaningful way."Whittingham, part of Norwalk Hospital, is a comprehensive community cancer center offering patients a team approach and multiple treatment options.

Family friend and Wilton resident Sarah Gioffre has been helping the Kalins to organize "Sally's Mustangs," a team that is walking and running in Sally's honor. So far, 77 people have joined the team, raising more than $14,000. Gioffre has also recruited other Wiltonites to take part, including Don Sauvigne, whose his wife Sharon died of breast cancer in 2008. Wilton's Dan Riley is managing the 150 volunteers.

Each year, the event draws more than 2,500 participants from throughout Fairfield County. The 3K walk and 5K run start and end at Calf Pasture Beach. Registration begins at 10 a.m., with the walk/run starting at noon. All proceeds go to support the center. Residents can register and donate online at www.norwalkhospitalfoundation.org or call 203.852.2216.

Registration is $20 per person and includes a T-shirt. There is no charge for children under 12. Additionally, the walk route will be lined with tribute flags to honor or remember a friend, relative, doctor or nurse that can be purchased for $100. For more information about Whittingham Cancer Center, visit www.norwalkhealh.org .

Do you plan to take part in Saturday's event? Does it have special meaning for you?

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