Post Eagle Newspaper


May 24, 2024

45°F, few clouds
New Jersey

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Councilman Grabowski Remembered
With “Matt Garbo” Lap

Clifton Residents Come Out to Fight Cancer

CLIFTON, NJ – The fences displayed movie posters, Princesses and Super heroes walked the luminary lined “track”, the Director declared the movie a success. This must be the Relay for Life of Clifton with the theme, Lights, Action, Relay for a Cure. Families, friends, strangers, young and old, some in baby carriages, and some with canes and scooters participated in this year’s American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life in Clifton because they personally, or someone they know, has battled cancer.

They did more than walk around a track all night. They joined a national movement that has raised over $3 billion since its inception for the fight against cancer. They walked to create more birthdays around the world and hope for those battling the disease.

mattphotoSeventy-five (75) cancer survivors celebrated their triumph over the disease by walking in the Survivors’ Lap to kick off the Relay. They were then joined by more than 700 participants at the event to pay tribute to a true Relay supporter, Clifton Councilman Matt Grabowski, who lost his battle with cancer this year. Matt’s family were in attendance and joined the walkers as they walked to the music from an original CD of Matt’s (“I’m Alive and I’m Free” by Matt Garbo). Walkers continued to relay all day and into the night in honor of cancer survivors, caregivers, and those who lost their battle.

Joanne Bujanowski, cancer survivor, was surrounded by her family as she shared her emotional story of her journey with cancer.

The children enjoyed getting tattoos, having their face painted, and decorating cookies!!

Many students from CHS passed the night away with volleyball, frisbee, the very popular pie eating contest, and their very interesting firehose competition. Music for the event was provided by 2 bands – Kneel Before Zod and Bob Omb. It was a nice mix of music for our diversified age span.

As night began to fall, lights were turned off and more than 500 candles were lit at an emotional luminaria service as walkers remembered those lost to the disease. To the song Amazing Grace played by bagpiper Scott Porter, participants walked in a lap of silence around the track lined with more than 900 luminaria bags as a tribute to those who have battled and survived ,and those lost to this demon disease. This was an amazingly emotional and breathtaking part of the night for all the participants.

DSCF2038forwebIn photo: Mayor Anzaldi with Ray, Chris and Val Grabowski, Lorna Samgour and daughter Ashley.

More than $62,000 was raised during the annual event with more donations still making their way to ACS. Funds raised from the Relay For Life event help save lives and create more birthdays by helping you stay well, helping you get well, by finding cures, and by fighting back. “The American Cancer Society is appreciative of the overwhelming show of support from the Clifton community,” said Kristin Bruno, American Cancer Society Relay For Life director.

“This community has taken up the fight against cancer and money raised through this event will help provide support services to help people get well and stay well. Funds will also go towards cutting edge research in striving to one day find a cure for cancer. This Relay For Life represents hope for those that are battling cancer and hope that the disease will one day be eliminated.”

For more information about Relay For Life in your community, call the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345. Donations received through 8/31/15 will be included in the total for the Clifton relay. Visit to make a donation. Thank you Clifton for all your support!

In photo on right: Chris Liszner and the Red Hat Angels