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Radcliff, businesses support fight against cancer

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Relay for Life begins Friday night at North Hardin High

By Amber Coulter

Jacqueline Bates made the change permanent when she found an opportunity to decorate her business with purple to promote cancer awareness and Radcliff’s Relay for Life.

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Some businesses and city departments hung ribbons and inflated purple balloons to participate in Radcliff’s Paint the Town Purple, which encouraged residents to decorate buildings and everything else they could with purple.

The week-long event culminates in a judging today. Winners will be announced during Radcliff’s Relay, which begins with opening ceremonies at 6 p.m. today at North Hardin High School. The event ends at 5 a.m. Saturday.

Bates went for purple paint to give a makeover to Jacqueline’s Total Hair Care on South Wilson Road, which she owns.

Now, a wooden swing and wicker furniture on the porch, posts on the front sign, a mailbox and two front doors are painted deep purple.

There are purple flowers inside and outside, and some chairs have been upholstered in purple fabric.

Bates even put a streak of purple in her light-colored hair.

“I figured I might as well go the whole way,” she said. “Besides, I think it looks good. I like it.”

Bates takes the cause personally.

Her sister died of cancer in February. She has also lost a friend to cancer, seen other friends survive the disease and served customers who were battling it.

Bates said Paint the Town Purple is a good event, and some can forget how big of a problem cancer is if they’re not directly affected by the disease.

She hopes passersby will be reminded when they see all the purple splashed around her business.

“I hope they think of doing something for cancer, any kind of cancer,” she said.

Tim Fulkerson, sales manager of Knox Ford on Dixie Boulevard, said he also hopes the event reminds others of the need.

The car dealership was one of a few in the city that tied purple balloons to display cars in the parking lot. It also was one of several businesses in the community at which city officials dropped off purple T-shirts available for sale to the public.

The shirts cost $10, and the profit goes to Relay.

Fulkerson said the business wanted to participate in Paint the Town Purple because it was an opportunity to support the community and show that employees there care.

Radcliff Fire Chief Jamie Henderson said his employees also care about the community, and they look for opportunities to help whenever they can.

He said that spirit is what inspired city firefighters to get behind stringing purple over the South Wilson Road department’s front and bay doors and around planters full of purple petunias.

“The guys seem to like it, and it gets us involved in the community,” he said.

Henderson said a lot of people in the community have been affected by cancer, and his own mother died of the disease.

His assistant, Pam Puckett-Hulsey, is a survivor of a brain tumor, which she occasionally has evaluated by magnetic resonance imaging to make sure it hasn’t gotten worse.

She doesn’t feel bad for herself.

“It’s a triumph in your life,” she said. “So many people don’t make it.”

Puckett-Hulsey said it’s important to support Relay because cancer touches everyone, and it’s important to remind people of the positive things going on.

“There are survivors,” she said. “There are, and people need to know that.”

Amber Coulter can be reached at (270) 505-1746 or acoulter@thenewsenterrprise.com.