Braving the Storm: The Walking Ladies of the Chuck Norris Posse

This last weekend May 6-7, the awesome and inspiring teachers of The Seedling School walked for 24 hours at Claremont High School to raise over $1700 during the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life.

Mrs. Deep Tolia-Shah, Mrs. Carrie Swienton, and Mrs. Tracy Mokricky braved the wet and wild weather that hit Southern California over the weekend to fulfill their promise to walk continuously for 24 hours in solidarity with cancer survivors and those lost to cancer.

 Team Chuck Norris Posse: (Left to Right) Mrs. Deep Tolia-Shah, friend, Mrs. Carrie Swienton, Mrs. Tracy Mokricky

Team Chuck Norris Posse: (Left to Right) Mrs. Deep Tolia-Shah, friend, Mrs. Carrie Swienton, Mrs. Tracy Mokricky

Their team, Chuck Norris Posse, walked through pouring rain, wild cyclonic wind gusts, and occasional hail. They started strong through the opening ceremony with support of friends and family. The continued on as other participants disappeared with the thunderstorms. In the late evening, they were rewarded with the the Luminaria and continued to walk in the light of the words "HOPE".

 After dark, Relay participants shared an emotional moment when each Luminaria was lit in remembrance of a life touched by cancer. Together, they took a moment of silence to remember the loved ones they’re dedicated to. 

After dark, Relay participants shared an emotional moment when each Luminaria was lit in remembrance of a life touched by cancer. Together, they took a moment of silence to remember the loved ones they’re dedicated to. 

During the evening with clearer weather, my family and I walked with these lovely ladies and found out more about their lives. Mrs. Swienton was instrumental in setting up the Relay for Life for the Greater Pomona Valley Chapter. She started walking 6 years ago when a dear friend was diagnosed with cancer, and she was looking for additional ways to demonstrate her support beyond just monetary donations. Since then, she has walked every year. 

Over the years, Mrs. Swienton has recruited the support of her friends and colleagues and at work. For the last few years Mrs. Deep Tolia-Shah and Mrs. Tracy Mokricky have walked with her in solidarity. 

By the time morning arrived and they crossed the 24 hours threshold, these 3 ladies were among the last 15 brave souls to have fulfilled their commitment, dwindled down from the initial hundred. When asked about how she felt, Mrs. Mokricky stated, "There was a time there where I was really thinking maybe we don't have to do this because of the weather, but then inside I was glad we did it." Like everything in life, sticking to our faith, beliefs, and values can be accompanied by doubt and fear, but in the end when we trust in the goodness of God and wholeheartedly do what is right, we can inspire everyone around us. My family and I were deeply touched and inspired by these 3 lovely ladies who both metaphorically and physically walked through the storm for their beliefs. I hope you are as deeply moved as we are.

 "There was a time there where I was really thinking maybe we don't have to do this because of the weather, but then inside I was glad we did it."

"There was a time there where I was really thinking maybe we don't have to do this because of the weather, but then inside I was glad we did it."

Funds raised support cancer patient programs and groundbreaking research that can help save lives. This event also celebrated the over 15.5 million cancer survivors nationwide.