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Firefighters don pink T-shirts for annual awareness campaign
Cost Less pink t-shirts
The crew at Turlock’s Cost Less Market don their pink T-shirts in support of the Turlock Firefighters Local #2434’s breast cancer awareness campaign (CANDY PADILLA/The Journal).

Pink may not be a typical color associated with fall, but in Turlock it most definitely is, as it harkens the return of the breast cancer awareness campaign from the Turlock Firefighters Local #2434.

Turlock firefighters will be donning the specially designed pink T-shirts throughout the month of October and hopes the community will join them and in doing so, help raise funds for the Bill and Elsie Ahlem Cancer Endowment, which assists local community members with their cancer treatments.

Since the firefighters union began the campaign several years ago, they have raised more than $116,000 for the endowment fund, said Turlock Fire Capt. Frank Saldivar.

“It started off small and we didn’t know what to expect,” Saldivar said of the campaign. “It continues to grow.”

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women, except for skin cancers, according to the American Cancer Society. Currently, the average risk of a woman in the United States developing breast cancer sometime in her life is about 12 percent. This means there is a 1 in 8 chance a woman will develop breast cancer. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women (only lung cancer kills more women each year). The chance that a woman will die from breast cancer is about 1 in 38.

The American Cancer Society estimates more than 332,000 cases of invasive and non-invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in 2019.

“When we started this years ago, our whole mission was to be aware,” Saldivar said. “This year we are doing it again. We want you to be aware of your health and take the initiative throughout the year to take time and have an exam.”

This year the design features the union’s emblem and pink ribbon on the front and an American flag on the back. The shirts are $15 for short sleeves and $20 for long sleeves and are available in styles for men, women and children, in a variety of sizes.

T-shirts can be pre-ordered through the union’s website at The shirts also will be sold in October at Crivelli’s Shirts & More, at 310 E Main St.; the gift shop at Emanuel Medical Center at 825 Delbon Ave.; Ten Pin Fun Center at 3700 Countryside Dr.; and at fire administration at 244 N. Broadway.