Marin Resident to Climb Mt. Shasta to Benefit Breast Cancer Research
MARIN, Calif., April 7, 2009 - Alice Dunning stops for a photograph during her Bhutan climb in November at 16,000 feet, where she raised a prayer flag for Ron Dunning, her brother-in-law, who died of cancer in 1997.
Alice Dunning of San Rafael is planning her second climb of Mount Shasta in June to raise funds to fight breast cancer for the Breast Cancer Fund. Following more than three decades as a cancer caregiver, she is continuing her commitment to raise awareness and will make the climb with her brother-in-law, Gil Arriaga of Davis. Dunning is a radiation therapist at the Marin Cancer Institute, a program of Marin General Hospital.
“There’s a peculiar thing about breast cancer – it hasn’t gone away nor has the need to find the cause and work for the prevention gone away,” she said. “I am dedicating the climb to three wonderful Marin women, who continue to be such an inspiration to me. They are my very good friends and breast cancer survivors.”
Dunning will join about 30 people in the 10th Climb Against the Odds/Mount Shasta, June 21 though 27. She made her first climb of the 14,162 foot peak with the BCF in July 2007.
Dunning is an avid rower and hiker who climbed Mount Whitney and trained on Mount Tamalpais. She decided to participate in this year’s Shasta climb during the Breast Cancer Fund’s Sacred Trek in Bhutan in November. The nine-day trek included nine hikers covering 80 miles and raising prayer flags at 16,000 feet.
“It was an amazing journey,” she said. “I am committed to helping effect change that ends this worldwide medical condition. Here in Marin County there is an even higher incidence of breast cancer than in other locales, so environmental research is critical to reduce the rate of diagnoses for women who live here.”
The Breast Cancer Fund, based in California, raises funds to identify, and advocate for the elimination of, environmental and preventable causes of breast cancer.
Dunning has raised more than $25,000 for the Breast Cancer Fund.