Relay for Life volunteer becomes a survivor

Staff Reports • Updated Apr 6, 2017 at 2:00 PM

Brenda Eubanks was an incredible fundraiser and team member of the Wilson Bank & Trust Relay team since Relay for Life originated in Lebanon.  

Eubanks joined the bank staff in 1990, so she’s been a member of the bank team since its first year in 1996. Her passion for fundraising for the American Cancer Society was personal as she lost her mother and other family members to cancer. Through the years, she has dedicated countless hours to personal fundraising and, on several occasions, was recognized by the American Cancer Society as a grand club member for reaching a $1,000 fundraising milestone.  

For the past two years, Eubanks served as a volunteer on the event leadership team that plans and coordinates the Relay for Life event each year.  

But little did she know that earlier this year, she would hear those words that everyone hopes they never have to hear, “you have cancer.”

Eubanks received her diagnosis as a result of a routine physical, and her physicians reacted quickly to begin making plans for her treatment regime. Eubanks has a strong support system and so many family and friends who love and care about her.  Her family members enlisted Eubanks’ friends to join them in fundraising this year to honor her willingness to support so many others in the past.  

Eubanks was so proud to share her involvement with Relay for Life when she was told by her oncologist to limit her internet research, but that the American Cancer Society website was preferred. Another poignant moment for Eubanks was visiting the American Cancer Society’s Nashville office to get information about support services and to request a wig. 

Eubanks and her husband, Orbie, grew up in Lebanon and have made Lebanon their home for more than 40 years. The couple has two children, Michael Eubanks and Lisa (Eubanks) Nave, and four grandchildren. 

When survivors share their experiences, a few things are often heard that they have in common such as a loving family support system, a positive attitude and their faith.  Eubanks said she has all three of these things going for her as she continues her treatments throughout this year.  

The Lebanon Relay for Life is scheduled for June 9 on the west lawn of Wilson Bank & Trust at 623 W. Main St. It will begin at 6 p.m. and conclude at midnight.  The event should provide something for everyone in any family with bounce houses and games for the children, along with live entertainment by the Blues Brokers and Feelin’ Groovy. Live and silent auction give visitors a chance to support Relay by buying an item donated by a local business or by individuals. Teams will provide food as they continue to raise funds to meet their team goals throughout the evening.

Shortly after the opening ceremonies at 6 p.m., cancer survivors will walk around the track while they are cheered on by event participants. Caregivers will also take a lap, after which team members and others will walk until midnight. The most meaningful time of the evening is the luminaria ceremony. Luminaria bags and torches of hope purchased by individuals in the community will light up the night in honor or in memory of friends and family members. 

For more information about the event visit relayforlife.org/wilsontn.  

Also visit the Facebook page, Relay for Life (Wilson County), for information about upcoming events. For more information about participating in the event, joining a team or making a donation, send requests to [email protected]  


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