Walk with a purpose

Two peninsula women have a very long walk ahead of them.

After logging about 400 training miles since January, Barb Butcher, of

Sequim, and her daughter Michelle Butcher, of Port Angeles, will spend Sept. 11-13 walking, walking, walking. Covering 20 miles each day, the Breast Cancer 3-Day is a nationwide fundraising program of the Susan G. Komen Foundation to support finding a cure for breast cancer.

Michelle participated in the 2006 walk in support of her friend and co-worker Betty Graf, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005. Graf is doing well following her treatment.

As a joint celebration of landmark birthdays - Michelle turned 40 and Barb turned 65 this year - the Butchers decided to walk the 3-Day together. Barb Butcher usually volunteers some time each year in an orphanage. She has been to Romania, Poland, Mexico and twice to South Africa.

"I decided to do this, this time," she said.

Participants are required to raise at least $2,300 and the Butchers each set a goal of $3,500. Each is nearing the goal, hoping the last few days will push them over the top.

Barb, a longtime Realtor in Sequim, said, "The Realtors have helped me a lot." Donations can be made online at

The walk starts in Shoreline, meanders through Edmonds, Lynnwood and points north, with two

nights camping in Everett.

"We're going to shower in the back of a semi-truck," Michelle said.

"No hair dryers!" Barb said. She has lost a couple of toenails to the effort, a common occurrence for long-distance walkers and runners.

The final day will see them back to Seattle, ending at Seattle Center.

In spite of these hardships, Michelle said, "It's an amazing event to be involved in." From the crew and volunteers to the participants and people who live along the route, she said, "Everyone is so nice to each other. It's how you wish the world was all the time."

Reach Sandra Frykholm at sfrykholm@

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