Group starts Relay for Life team for sick coworker

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - A local group is fundraising for the American Cancer Society's 2014 Relay for Life in honor of a coworker and friend.

"I was diagnosed the first time in 2012 with lung cancer. I had to have the top left lobe of my lung removed," said Carmelita Herndon.

In September 2013, doctors told Carmelita the cancer had returned.

"It was stage 3 whenever they did the biopsy in September. Now it's stage 4 and it's spread to bone and brain."

When her coworkers at Comfort Suites in Jonesboro learned her terminal diagnosis they decided to start a Relay For Life team called Forever S.U.I.T.E. on Lita. S.U.I.T.E. stands for Surviving Ultimately Involves Team Effort.

"Our team goal is $5,000 for Ms. Lita," said team captain Brittany Reed.

"Me and Ms. Lita became friends about a year ago and she told me about her story, and about three or four months ago she told us about it coming back and it kind of hurt my heart."

"It means a whole lot to me, not just because of me, but in April it will be two years that I lost my husband from the very same cancer," Carmelita said.

Her father also died from lung cancer. She is overwhelmed by the show of support from her work family.

"These are some awesome people. It didn't take long to get close to them."

Forever S.U.I.T.E. on Lita will compete at the Relay For Life of Craighead County that is scheduled for Friday, May 30 at 6 p.m. at the NEA Fairgrounds.

Click here for more information about Carmelita's team or contact Brittany Reed at or call (870) 336-2280.

Click here to find more Relay For Life events in Region 8.

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