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The Crew of the STARFLEET Vessel U.S.S. Charter Oak: NCC-63545 pose under the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Arch in Hartford, Conn. for the 2024 PanCAN PurpleStride walk on April 27, 2024.

HARTFORD, CONN. - Nearly one dozen members of the STARFLEET: The International Star Trek Fan Association Connecticut Chapter U.S.S. Charter Oak (NCC-63545), and their families joined several hundred other walkers in the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network's PurpleStride Event in Bushnell Park in Hartford Saturday after having spent the last three months raising money for the walk.

“I stride because cancer and Pancreatic issues run in my family,” Team Trek: Connecticut Co-Captain Ryan O'Connor said. “Luckily my family has never had to deal with Pancreatic Cancer, but after learning about Kitty [Swink's] battle for the past 20 years, and those who have ties to Star Trek, like Kitty, with their battles with this terrible cancer, I had to do something.”

Fundraising efforts by the members of Team Trek: Connecticut brought nearly $2,500 to the event; money that - through the organization known as PanCAN - will help people like Survivor, Trisha Cyr, who was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer about six months ago.

“I'm very grateful for the support from my family, my friends, from everyone,” Cyr said.

And while Team Cyr was lucky to have Cyr walking, members of Team Guy found themselves walking in memory of their inspiration, Guy Carducci, who passed away from his battle with Pancreatic Cancer on April 9, 2024, less than one year after being diagnosed.

“Guy had a stomach ache for a little while, and from there came the diagnosis,” Team Guy Captain Maggie Seaver said. “It certainly is dreadful that you don't get the signs until it's too late. I've walked in other walks before, and I know that cancer is dreadful, but the hidden signs of Pancreatic Cancer is just horrible that people can be walking around with it and not be aware.”

The national average life expectancy rate over five years is around 13 percent according to event organizers. That number was only around four percent twenty years ago when actor, Kitty Swink, was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer. She, alongside her husband Armin Shimerman who is known to many Star Trek Fans for his portrayal of the Ferengi Bartender Quark on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and other Trek Alum Jonathan Frakes, John Billingsley, and Jaun Carlos Coto are members of Team Trek Against Pancreatic Cancer, which was walking in the PurpleStride event on the beach in Santa Monica, California the same day. Both walks were part of nearly 60 different walks around the country put on by PanCAN in effort to raise money and awareness for Pancreatic Cancer.

Event organizers from the Connecticut walk reported a total of $235,646 was raised for this walk alone. Based on a calculation compiled from each of the events on the PurpleStride official website, more than $14,974,992 was raised across all the walks. Team Trek Against Pancreatic Cancer was listed as the top Fundraising team bringing in $198,233 in donations, as of time of publication of this article.

“Knowing that we need to do more,” said Seaver. “We need to increase that Survival Rate. We need to bring more awareness, and that's the one sign today that's lifting us up.”

Team Trek: Connecticut was formed by members of the Star Trek Fan Group, STARFLEET: The International Star Trek Fan Association, which was founded in 1974. The Star Trek franchise was created by Gene Roddenberry in 1966, and is owned by Paramount/CBS, which neither Team Trek: Connecticut nor STARFLEET have direct affiliation with.

Donations can still be made toward this walk until 11:59p.m. on June 30, 2024. If you wish to donate, please click this link:

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