Julie Ratner created the Ellen's Run 5k event in 1997 in honor of her sister Ellen Hermanson, who died of breast cancer in 1995. The event recently celebrated its 15th anniversary, 27East.com
The race took place in Southampton, New York with over 1,000 participants clad in pink. Runners were encouraged by a crowd of supporters, but the loudest applause was given to the breast cancer survivors as they crossed the finish line.
Ratner said that she experiences a mix of emotions when the race comes, and that it triggers memories of her sister.
"There's always a little sense of sadness, too, because I always still miss my sister," she told the news source. "But I'm so proud of what we've accomplished through this run and the money we have raised."
The majority of money raised from the event stays local, going to treat those diagnosed with the disease within the community. Previous races helped The Ellen Hermanson Foundation raise money for the Southampton Hospital, which led to the construction of the Ellen Hermanson Breast Health Center.
To date, the foundation has raised more than $2.5 million to fund breast health initiatives on the East End of Long Island.