Lylia ‘Lyl’ Ishihara of Kailua has been named a Hero of Hope by the American Cancer Society.  Lyl is one of two 2015 Heroes of Hope in the state of Hawaii.

Heroes of Hope are cancer survivors or caregivers who have demonstrated a commitment to the American Cancer Society’s mission of saving lives from the disease. As highly visible symbols of a personal victory over cancer, they share their personal stories in a variety of settings to motivate others to fight back against the disease.

Lyl has been a breast cancer survivor for 13 years.  She attributes her strength and willpower to her three daughters who were ages 10, 2 and 1 at the time of her first diagnosis.  Lyl first participated in Relay For Life in 2001.  She was bald and sporting a new hat from the American Cancer Society with her 3 daughters in tow.  She recalls her first experience “At Relay For Life, I was welcomed and assured that I was important to my family and community and I left knowing that I could fight the battle because I was not alone.” Lyl is an inspiration to her daughters as well as her community and continues in her commitment to finish the fight against cancer.

“When these special volunteers share their struggles and experiences, they represent all cancer survivors and caregivers,” said Tanya Brown, Senior Manager, Relay For Life. “Through their stories, they inspire and encourage people facing cancer and motivate people to take action through things like participating in our local Relay For Life event.”

The American Cancer Society Relay For Life movement is the world’s largest fundraising event to end cancer, uniting communities across the globe to fight back against this disease. Teams camp out at local schools, parks, or fairgrounds and take turns walking or running around a track or path. Each team has at least one representative on the track at all times and raises funds to support the Society’s lifesaving mission in the months leading up to the event. In 2014, four million people participated in more than 6,000 events worldwide. This year there will be many Relay For Life events on the island of O’ahu at various locations all throughout the year.

Call Tanya Brown at 808-432-9164 or visit for more information about this year’s Relay For Life events.

About the American Cancer Society

The American Cancer Society is a global grassroots force of nearly three million volunteers saving lives and fighting for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. As the largest voluntary health organization, the Society’s efforts have contributed to a 22 percent decline in cancer death rates in the US during the past two decades, and a 50 percent drop in smoking rates. Thanks in part to our progress nearly 14.5 million Americans who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will celebrate more birthdays this year.  We’re determined to finish the fight against cancer. As the nation’s  largest private, not-for-profit investor in cancer research, we’re finding cures and ensuring people facing cancer have the help they need and continuing the fight for access to quality health care, lifesaving screenings, clean air, and more. For more information, to get help, or to join the fight, visit or call us anytime, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345.

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