NUTLEY, NJ – National Cancer Survivors Day is an annual, treasured celebration of life that is held in hundreds of communities nationwide, and around the world, on the first Sunday in June.

It is a celebration for those who have survived, an inspiration for those recently diagnosed, a gathering of support for families, and an outreach to the community.

In our area, members of Nutley Relay For Life, in conjunction with American Cancer Society, held a celebration for cancer survivors and their caregivers with an entertaining and engaging program presented by Turtle Back Zoo on Sunday, June 2, at the Nutley Recreation Annex Building on Bloomfield Avenue in Nutley.

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“A watercolor illustration of the New Jersey State Reptile ‘The Bog Turtle’ by Nutley artist Denise Costantino, inspired by a recent visit to the zoo, was gifted to the Turtle Back Zoo during Nutley’s Celebration of National Cancer Survivors Day,” said Heather Soto, event chairperson and executive committee member of Nutley Relay For Life.

On National Cancer Survivors Day, thousands gather across the globe to honor cancer survivors and to show the world that life after a cancer diagnosis can be fruitful, rewarding, and even inspiring.

It is a day for everyone, whether you're a cancer survivor, a family member, friend, or medical professional.  This day provides an opportunity for all people living with a history of cancer – including America’s more than 15.5 million cancer survivors – to connect with each other, celebrate milestones, and recognize those who have supported them along the way.

It is also a day to draw attention to the ongoing challenges of cancer survivorship in order to promote more resources, research, and survivor-friendly legislation to improve cancer survivors’ quality of life.

To date for the 2019 fundraising season, the Nutley Relay For Life community has raised $89,150.31 for American Cancer Society, pushing the overall Nutley total since 2007 to more than $1.3 million.