Group walks in honor of long-time Sonoma Raceway employee

Family, friends walk to raise money in honor of Sonoma Raceway employee John Cardinale

Group walks in honor of long-time Sonoma Raceway employee
January 23, 2014, 4:45 pm

A group of 350 people ran and walked the 2.52 mile Sonoma Raceway to raise money for 'John's March Against Stomach Cancer.' (PHOTO: CLIFF MILLS)

To honor a long-time employee of Sonoma Raceway, 350 people turned out Saturday, January 18 to walk and run the 2.52 mile, 12-turn road course.

At the third annual 'John's March Against Stomach Cancer,' the group raised $11,750 for the No Stomach for Cancer foundation in honor of John Cardinale -- the longtime community and media relations manager at the raceway at Sears Point, who died last March after a two-year bout of gastric cancer.

“John's March embodies John's spirit and the mission of No Stomach for Cancer of supporting research and uniting the caring power of people affected by stomach cancer,” said No Stomach for Cancer Board Chair Beth Lambert, who attended the event with several family members. “It was wonderful to see so many people affected by stomach cancer arriving at the event as strangers, yet sharing an immediate connection, exchanging supportive hugs and words.”

Cardinale passed away in March after a two-year battle with stomach cancer.

Participants in the march ranged from competitive runners to families, including children on bikes and strollers, and quite a few four-legged friends.

“To be able to come together to support the fight against this terrible disease and to celebrate the spirit of people we loved is a privilege for which I am truly grateful,” said Sacramento’s Kathy Black. “We hope to come together every year to take time to remember and honor those we loved.”

Stomach cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the world, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information. The American Cancer Society estimates there are 1,000,000 new cases diagnosed in the world each year, with more than 800,000 deaths annually, yet it is one of the least funded cancers, in terms of research.