More than 13,000 attend 17th annual Komen San Diego Race for the Cure

SAN DIEGO - It was a sea of pink at Balboa Park on Sunday for the 17th annual Komen San Diego Race for the Cure.

Mixed in the crowd of more than 13,000 people are many family members walking in memory of a loved one who lost their battle to breast cancer.

One of them is Denise Nasrawi. Her mother was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer in July of 2011. She says they lost her a month and four days later.

That is why Nasrawi chose to walk for a cure, the annual event which raises money for the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

75 percent of what is raised will stay in San Diego, funding programs that will help pay for exams such as mammograms, chemotherapy and even the purchase of wigs. The rest will go towards cancer research.

It is something Robin Marella stands behind 100 percent. Just three years after losing her mother to breast cancer, she was diagnosed herself.

"Her last words were I love you and you're beautiful," said Marella. "Those words carried her through everything I went through with breast cancer."

Now, 11 years later, she is cancer-free, joining more than 2.8 million cancer survivors.

She hopes to inspire others to fight proudly, starting with attending events like the Race for the Cure.

Organizers say they were able to raise $1.1 million, but that number will likely change because this is a month-long campaign and more donations still need to be counted.

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