DENVER-- The Over the Edge event is held every year by the Cancer League of Denver as their main fundraising event for cancer research and to help patients.
Coming into Saturday, the event raised more than $250,000 and they hope to have $400,000 by the time all the money is collected. Many of the people rappelling down the hotel are cancer survivors or have been affected by the disease. They see this as a symbolic way to raise money
“There is definitely a metaphor. Stepping over the edge is intimidating as is faced with the diagnosis that a doctor says you have cancer that’s terrifying,” cancer survivor Heather Smith said.
Sixteen members of South Metro Fire Department worked as volunteers. Two years ago they lost a colleague to job-related cancer and currently have a chief dealing with the disease.
“Firefighters are 2 1/2 to 5 times more likely to get 13 different types of cancer. We’re exposed to a lot of carcinogens with everything we do,” South Metro’s Jeff Pepper said.
Pepper said it’s why this event means a lot to those in the department and they hope it can lead to beneficial research going forward.