Trip provides refreshment in city resident’s cancer fight

Finch serves as Relay For Life honorary chair for Saturday’s event

Relay For Life Finch

Tonya Finch of Bellefontaine, center, sits with her grandsons, Korbin Smith, 6, and Karsen Drake, 11, just prior to beginning her treatments for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in January. (PHOTO | FINCH FAMILY)

While sitting at the Zangmeister Cancer Center for six to seven hours at a time to undergo chemotherapy earlier this year, city resident Tonya Finch said her mind would wander a bit when hearing sounds of airplanes droning overhead, as the Columbus-based center is located near the John Glenn Columbus International Airport.

The 32-year Honda of America Mfg. at East Liberty employee said a particular thought spurred by the airplanes kept her strong when enduring those long chemotherapy sessions and also the side effects afterward, which left her feeling fatigued and achy.

“I knew that not too long in the upcoming months, I was going to be on an airplane too, headed to Las Vegas with my mom, Gloria Finch, and friend, Barb Smith, for a bowling trip,” she said Monday evening, a day after returning home from the trip to compete at the United States Bowling Congress Open Championship with her mother’s Springfieldbased team.

“While I didn’t do that great with the bowling, it was the perfect chance to get away and get in some time by the pool and to have some fun. It was just what I needed after the whirlwind of treatments the past couple months.”

Now after returning home, Ms. Finch said another highlight coming up this week in the midst of starting her radiation treatments is being named the 2019 honorary chair of this year’s Logan County Relay For Life, a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, which kicks off at 11 a.m. Saturday at Southview Park.

The 20th annual Logan County event begins with an opening ceremony where Ms. Finch will share her journey with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma following her Dec. 26, 2018, diagnosis.

Festivities continue all day at the park until 11 a.m., including the luminary ceremony at 9:30 p.m.

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