Patient Care

Registration Opens for Seventh Annual Wilmot Warrior Walk

Jun. 6, 2019
The 2018 Wilmot Warrior Walk starting line
The 2018 Wilmot Warrior Walk starting line

UR Medicine’s Wilmot Cancer Institute will host its seventh annual Wilmot Warrior Walk on Sunday, Sept. 8 at the Highland Park Bowl in Rochester. Registration is now open for the annual event that features a certified 5K, certified 10K and a 1-mile walk, as well as a post-race celebration.

Proceeds support cancer research and the Judy DiMarzo Cancer Survivorship Program at Wilmot Cancer Institute, but it’s not just a fundraiser. This event is meant to unite those touched by cancer.

“Cancer doesn’t just impact the person diagnosed. It impacts entire families and communities. By coming together, we can have a more meaningful impact on local cancer research for those facing cancer in the future,” says Jonathan W. Friedberg, M.D., M.M.Sc., director of Wilmot Cancer Institute. “Our researchers want to find better ways to treat cancer, but we can’t do it without our community’s support. I invite everyone to come out and join us for what’s always been a moving day.”

Since the event began in 2013, it’s raised more than $575,000 and this year, the goal is to raise more than $200,000. In addition to supporting research at Wilmot, funds raised also benefit Wilmot’s Judy DiMarzo Cancer Survivorship Program. The program has provided approximately 4,500 survivorship visits since 2013. These appointments help educate and guide cancer patients who have completed active cancer treatment.

“Cancer changes a person’s life forever, and our program helps survivors and families live fully and with the best quality of life that they can achieve despite their cancer diagnosis,” says Louis “Sandy” Constine, M.D., director of the Survivorship program. “Support from the community at events like the Wilmot Warrior Walk help make programs like this one possible. We are so grateful for that support, and its impact is far-reaching.”

Beyond fundraising and races, the event will feature food trucks, bounce houses and other fun. This year, 13WHAM’s Jennifer Johnson will serve as emcee. Teams are encouraged to rally around cancer patients or survivors they know, wearing festive team shirts or even costumes; plenty of attendees at last year’s event donned tutus and funny hats!

“To me, the Warrior Walk is about inspiring all cancer patients to live a better life while fighting cancer,” says Lou Desfosses, a pancreatic cancer survivor and Wilmot Warrior Walk volunteer. He’s run in the event for the past three years. “Even when you have cancer, you can still live life to the fullest, and that’s what I aim to do. My motto is run to live, live to run, and I feel fortunate I’m able to continue running while living with cancer myself.”

The Wilmot Warrior Walk sponsors include Morgan Stanley-The Pelican Bay Group, Wegmans, The Summit Federal Credit Union, BME, Cobblestone Capital, Crazy Dog, The Kokanovich Family and Texas de Brazil. Sponsorships opportunities are still available. Contact the Wilmot Advancement team at (585) 276-4717 or to learn more.

Registration for the Wilmot Warrior Walk costs $30 per person if you register online; the cost is $40 per person the day of the event. Participants can register online through Friday, Sept. 6, at Medved Running & Walking Outfitters on Sunday, Sept. 7 or the day of the event.To learn more or register, visit


UR Medicine’s Wilmot Cancer Institute is the Finger Lakes region’s leader for cancer care and research. As a component of Strong Memorial Hospital, Wilmot Cancer Institute provides specialty cancer care services at the University of Rochester Medical Center and a network of locations throughout the region. The Institute also includes a team of 100 scientists who investigate many aspects of cancer, with an emphasis on how best to provide precision cancer care. To learn more, visit