The Vikings had their bye this past weekend, but U.S. Bank Stadium still featured a strong showing of support.
A crowd of 6,000 walked in and around the stadium as part of the "Making Strides Against Breast Cancer" walk to increase awareness of the disease and raise funds for breast cancer research and treatment.
"I think this brand new, beautiful stadium is a big part of it," said David Benson, Executive Vice President of the Midwest Division for the ACS. "But, there are so many people around town that have been touched by breast cancer, and I think [they want] to be able to come out and do something fun and engaging but also know they're making a difference."
Marcus Sherels, Anthony Barr, Brandon Fusco were among the players who held the annual Vikings Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon.
According to the American Cancer Society, nearly 250,000 women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016. Since death rates started dropping in 1990, more than 249,000 breast cancer deaths have been prevented.
In addition to volunteers, supporters and breast cancer survivors who participated in the walk, one familiar Vikings face appeared at U.S. Bank Stadium on his weekend off. Rochester native Marcus Sherels exchanged his purple jersey for a pink T-shirt and joined breast cancer survivor Karen Booth and her sister, Lyn, on their team.
At the luncheon two weeks ago, Sherels called Karen and Lyn "lifelong friends" after first connecting with them in 2014 at the annual event.
"They're definitely our heroes," Sherels said of Karen and other survivors. "Just the strength they have and the influence they have on everyone – to survive something like this is incredible."