They walked like they owned it Thursday night at the Thomasville Center for the Arts.

They had the stage to themselves, in celebration of their great victory.

All told, nearly 50 survivors of a wide variety of cancers dressed up and did their best fashion model imitation at the Pink Affair on Thursday night.

Pink is associated with the fight against breast cancer, but the night and the effort go to fight all kinds of cancer.

This month is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the pink ribbons around town — and on the front page of our paper — hopefully serve as a beacon for those either engaged in fighting breast cancer or a signal to get checked.

According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the second most common cancer among American women. Skin cancer is No. 1.

Currently, the risk for a woman in the U.S. developing breast cancer at some point in her life is about 12 percent. That’s about a 1 in 8 chance.

The American Cancer Society also estimates that in 2018: 

Among women, only lung cancer is a bigger killer as a cancer among women. But progress is being made — death rates from breast cancer have dropped 39 percent from 1989-2015. Since 2007, according to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer death rates from cancer have remained steady in women under 50 but they are falling for older women. The reason? Finding breast cancer earlier through screening and increased awareness and better treatments.

Treatments, though, can be an arduous task, be they surgery, chemotherapy, radiation or a combination.

The American Cancer Society predicts that there will be 56,520 new cases of cancer, in all forms, this year in Georgia and that 17,730 Georgians will die this year from cancer. That puts Georgia in the top 10 among states for new cases of cancer and for deaths caused by cancer. 

Cancer of any kind is an affliction and a killer that does not discriminate. It does not care how old or young, how affluent or poor, how kind or abrasive you are. It does not care how many X or Y chromosomes you have. It does not care about the color of your skin.

Across the U.S., cancer claims 1,670 people every day and another 4,750 are diagnosed with some form of cancer.

Luckily, here, we have the Lewis Hall Singletary Oncology Center, with its 44,000 square foot Cancer Center and some of the best physicians to be found specializing in cancer.

There is state-of-the-art treatment, patient support and even the opportunity for patients to take part in clinical trials. 

Cancer never sleeps, the slogan goes, and so the fight against it, in all its forms, cannot take a rest, either. We applaud and congratulate those who continue the fight against breast cancer and all forms of cancer. We also hope that the end of the month doesn’t mean an end to getting checked, because early detection is crucial.