Madison Receives ‘Best Theme’ Award for 4th of July Float

Celebrating Independence Day as a Community

On Tuesday morning, the streets of Rexburg were lined with families and friends in celebration of America and Rexburg’s 88th annual Independence Day parade. Madison Memorial Hospital’s 4th of July float glistened with shimmering stars, waves of red, white and blue, and a giant bald eagle. The bald eagle was selected as a symbol for the nation in 1782 and is a fitting symbol for Madison Memorial as it represents the strength and long life the hospital strives to provide for community members. In the parade, Madison’s float was awarded “Best Theme.” Over 90 floats participated in the parade, each celebrating the community and country in their own way. Following the parade, Rexburg’s Celebration in the Park provided many festivities for community members at Porter Park. Madison Memorial Hospital appreciates being part of such a patriotic and united community.


The Power Behind Relay for Life

Cancer Never Rests, Neither Will We at Relay for Life

Cancer. It’s a word that we often see in medical pamphlets and often hear in whispers. We know it’s a disease that’s not to be messed with, but we’re always glad when it hasn’t messed with us. How would we act, however, if we knew the National Cancer Institute’s conservative statistic that approximately 38.5% of individuals will develop a form of cancer in their lifetime? Cancer doesn’t care who you are, it will affect you and those around you, and at one point or another, it will affect us all.

One individual who has experienced the affects of cancer in her life is Lisa Marie, and she’s not too different from any one of us. She’s from Idaho, works in the community, is a mother of three and loves to garden and read. The difference is that two of her three children are cancer survivors. Diagnosed at the ages of five and eight, her two daughters have undergone surgery and years of chemotherapy and treatment, but we’re glad to say that the youngest daughter will undergo her last leukemia treatment this upcoming week.

When Lisa Marie talks about this trial and all that her daughters and family have been through, she says that the girls are tough, but that fighting cancer is really “a family affair.” It is the entire family, not just the individual, that is fighting for life against this disease. And in the end it isn’t just the family that is critical in the fight, but friends and community members as well. Fighting cancer is a team effort, and it requires everyone to win.

That is the idea behind the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. Relay for Life is a community fundraising event happening June 23rd at the Madison Jr. High track and everyone is invited to attend. For six hours, individuals and teams of families, friends and community members will gather together to remember those we have lost and to recognize and celebrate those who are currently affected by cancer, cancer survivors and their families.

Throughout the event, individuals will walk the track to signify that cancer never stops and neither do cancer patients and their families in the fight against it. There are many individuals in our area who have been affected by cancer, but we shouldn’t wait to be affected by it to participate in this event. In the words of Lisa Marie, if you haven’t been impacted by cancer, you should “relay to keep it that way.”

You are invited to the Rexburg Relay for Life June 23rd from 6pm-12am. Be the family, friend or community member to strengthen those affected by cancer. For more information about Relay for Life, to donate or to create a team for the event, visit the site Confirm  your attendance, and invite your friends through the Facebook event page Rexburg Relay for Life.

While you can form a team to help fundraise and to share a campsite with at the event, individuals and families are welcome to come to the event without being on a team to participate in activities, get dinner and enjoy free entertainment. Participate in Rexburg Relay for Life to fight back against cancer in our community, celebrate life and to be the family, friend and support our community needs.


Skin Cancer Screenings for a More Prepared, Healthy You

Skin Cancer: More Likely than All Other Cancers Combined

When Madison School District invited local health care providers to offer screenings at the upcoming Community Wellness Fair, Brett Bagley, PA-C and owner of Fall Creek Skin and Health,  jumped at the chance. He wants people to understand that the survival rate for melanoma skin cancer is nearly 98 percent. He wants people to get screenings because screenings save lives.

Health care professionals didn’t understand skin cancer nearly as well back in 1979 when Randall Raschke thought nothing of the lesion next to his eye. Even when it grew large enough for him to feel every time he blinked, he wasn’t worried.  Lacking modern technology and levels of training, Raschke’s dermatologist didn’t even feel the lesion needed to be studied further after he removed it in a standard procedure.

It wasn’t until a year later when other health issues began to arise that Raschke was diagnosed with basal cell nevus syndrome. The growth his doctor had removed was likely basal cell carcinoma, more commonly known as skin cancer.

Fortunately, in the nearly 40 years since Raschke’s diagnosis, knowledge about skin cancer, how to recognize it, and how to treat it has grown tremendously.

According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, “Skin cancer is the uncontrollable growth of abnormal skin cells. It occurs when unrepaired DNA damage to skin cells (most often caused by ultraviolet radiation from sunshine or tanning beds) triggers mutations, or genetic defects, that lead the skin cells to multiply rapidly and form malignant tumors.”

There are different types of skin cancer, such as basal cell carcinoma and melanoma. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, while melanoma accounts for a small fraction of overall skin cancer cases, it is the cause of the majority of deaths. In fact, approximately one person dies of melanoma every hour nationwide.

Like with many medical issues however, preventive measures can greatly decrease the risk for and increase the prognosis of patients. Self-examinations, explained further here, daily use of SPF 15+ sunscreen, and skin cancer screenings are three simple ways of minimizing risk. Join Brett Bagley on Friday, May 12, at the Madison Community Health and Wellness Fair at Madison Junior High School to take your first step toward prevention and early detection with a free skin cancer screening.
Karl Raschke

Organizational Communication and Advocacy major at BYU-Idaho