Leading the Way

Colonial Life employees, Richard and Valerie Nixon walk for life

More than 120 Colonial Life employees and their families participated in the annual Walk for Life in Columbia, S.C. during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month to support breast cancer awareness in S.C.’s midlands.

The Walk for Life is a 3.1 mile-long walk that, along with the Famously Hot Pink Half Marathon, 5k and 10k, benefits the Palmetto Breast Health Center. This year’s nearly 5,600 walkers and runners helped to raise more than $588,000 for the center.

Richard Nixon, a customer loyalty specialist for Colonial Life, and his wife, Valerie Nixon, a voluntary benefits specialist at Colonial Life, honor their loved ones during National Breast Cancer Awareness month by participating in the event each year.

They began participating in the event to honor Richard’s mother, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002 and passed away in 2016, as well as Valerie’s sister, who was diagnosed in 2007.

“For years, we’ve participated to honor the strength of my mom and Valerie’s sister, and to support all who are courageously fighting breast cancer,” said Richard. “In recent years, we walk in special memory of my mom.”

Making it to the event this year was actually a challenge for the couple, as Valerie was recovering from a surgery – but she persevered and didn’t let it get in the way of the spirit of this event.

“It didn’t take away from the power and awe we felt being in that sea of pink shirts,” said Valerie.

When asked why they continue to walk for life and why they want others to join them in this event and similar ones around the country, Richard said, “The more we raise awareness of this disease, the more we can find ways to prevent, treat and one day cure our loved ones of it.”