2007-04-11 / Health

Driving The Effort To Eradicate Breast Cancer

Photo: Newscast Two-year breast cancer survivor Carla Harp, left, and her daughter Jaimee Dean sit inside a BMW 3 Series convertible during the national kickoff of the 11th annual BMW Ultimate Drive supporting Susan G. Komen for the Cure, in Athens, Georgia. Driven by their individual experiences with breast cancer, Carla and Jaimee launched their own business specializing in the needs of patients and survivors. Photo: Newscast Two-year breast cancer survivor Carla Harp, left, and her daughter Jaimee Dean sit inside a BMW 3 Series convertible during the national kickoff of the 11th annual BMW Ultimate Drive supporting Susan G. Komen for the Cure, in Athens, Georgia. Driven by their individual experiences with breast cancer, Carla and Jaimee launched their own business specializing in the needs of patients and survivors. (NAPSI)-Americans continue to fuel the effort to put the brakes on breast cancer and a popular program will once again get people revved up by raising funds and awareness.

Without a cure, one in eight women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with breast cancer. More than 200,000 women will be diagnosed this year, and almost 40,000 will die from the disease.

Ninety-five percent of women diagnosed with breast cancer at an early stage survive for more than five years. The death rate from the disease is declining; people are surviving. But in order to do so, they need access to medical care, screening, education, treatment and, ultimately, a cure.

A Long Road

The BMW Ultimate Drive is a grassroots program that gives community members the opportunity to get involved in the fight against breast cancer. In its 11th year, a fleet of 38 cars-led by a pair of 2007 BMW X5s-will travel the country, giving people the chance to get behind the wheel.

"Breast cancer is still the most common form of cancer among women-and the second leading cause of death," said Hala Moddelmog, president and chief executive officer of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. "The BMW Ultimate Drive has helped fund essential research and services for patients, survivors and their families."

For every mile driven during the event, $1 is donated to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the largest grassroots network of breast cancer survivors and activists. The money raised directly supports research, education, screening and outreach programs.

"Nearly 300,000 people have participated in the program over the past 10 years, and this year, 237 communities and thousands of supporters in the fight against breast cancer nationwide-will have the opportunity to become involved," said Tom Purves, chairman and CEO, BMW of North America.

Developed by BMW in partnership with Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the Ultimate Drive will have two fleets of specially badged BMWs crisscrossing the country visiting participating retail centers. The drive will continue through October 2007, inviting consumers to get behind the wheel and help contribute to the fight against breast cancer.

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