Family gathers from all over Kansas for Prairie Village Relay for Life

Sara Carlson (center) organized more than a dozen family members to walk in Saturday's Prairie Village Relay for Life in honor of her father.
Sara Carlson (center) organized more than a dozen family members to walk in Saturday’s Prairie Village Relay for Life in honor of her father.

By 11:45 a.m. Saturday, the temperature in Prairie Village was already flirting with the 90 degree mark — but Sara Carlson and her family were all smiles as they made their way around Franklin Park’s track clad in matching neon green t-shirts.

Carlson had organized more than a dozen family members as a team for the second Prairie Village Relay for Life to honor her father Dan, who passed away in December after fighting gall bladder cancer for nine months. Dan received treatment at The University of Kansas Hospital, and the relay’s proximity to the hospital as well as the ability of so many family members — some of whom came all the way from Hays — to gather this past Saturday led Sara to choose Prairie Village’s Relay as their event.

“We wanted to get as many people as possible out here to honor dad, and this fit will our schedule,” she said.

Carlson’s crew made up one of the more prominent packs of people who circled the track from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., with the Relay for Life’s signature “luminaria” walk taking place around 8 a.m.

“It’s good to get everybody together to talk and remember [dad],” said Carlson’s brother Kenny, who, like Sara lives in Olathe.

Organizers hoped to raise $15,000 to support cancer research with this year’s event.