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Sailing program for cancer patients preparing for busy summer

Updated: Jun. 9, 2021 at 12:54 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - An organization that helps cancer patients sail away from their troubles is preparing for a busy summer.

The three-hour sails from Healing Winds are free for cancer patients and their families as well as health care heroes who helped care for them during the pandemic.

They were able to continue doing the trips during COVID-19 with some adjustments. Kym Ketcham, captain of Healing Winds, says there were patients who weren’t sure they would be around for another year and who were grateful that the pandemic didn’t take the wind out of the program’s sails.

“Sometimes I have to confess that I got a little choked up. We had people who came aboard who said ‘Kym, with COVID, I’m in a room all by myself because nobody wants to give me COVID. I have cancer. It’s like you’re giving me my whole summer in one sail,’” Ketcham said.

There’s also a new program they’ll be launching this summer for kids with cancer or who are in remission. It’s a three-hour camp where they’ll learn the basics of sailing and then get to take the Healing Winds out on the water.

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