GALLERY: Hundreds raise $20k to fight deadly cancer
A RANDOM act of kindness may not be much for a stranger but the $1,000 donation towards fighting melanoma meant the world to Aaron Kelly.
The melanoma survivor said the early-morning generous donation started off Rockhampton's Melanoma March perfectly yesterday as people from all over Central Queensland gathered to raise vital awareness and life-saving funds for melanoma research.
Organiser of the region's first march was already making plans for next year after they raised $20,000 and doubled their expected numbers.
Mr Kelly said the funds would support the Big Data for Melanoma Project creating a critical register to record the treatment and outcomes of patients with melanoma.
More than 300 people, dogs, high-school boarders and anyone effected by the deadly cancer met at Victoria Park Oval and marched with their heads held high and shared inspirational stories.
"There were some really touching words shared this morning, I could not have asked for anything better,” Mr Kelly said.
Musicians lightened spirits as inspirational speakers tugged on heart strings about the reality that was melanoma.
This year 14,000 Australians will be told they have melanoma, a cancer killing more young people aged 20-39 than any other.
Mr Kelly listened to stories from the daughters of a regional dad diagnosed with stage four melanoma and a woman whose sister died in her 30s.
He said voicing these stories reminded people how deadly melanoma really was.
"Without research there is no cure for melanoma. Together as a community we can make a difference, and remind those with melanoma that they are not alone by participating and donating,” he said.
Mr Kelly thanked everyone involved in the successful day saying discussions were already in place about next year's march.