Thousands walk at Jones Beach to fight pancreatic cancer

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WANTAGH -

Thousands turned out at Jones Beach Sunday to take part in the annual Lustgarten Foundation Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk.

The rain didn't stop people from taking steps to push for earlier detection, better treatment and a cure for the disease, which often goes undetected until it's in its advanced stages.

"By the time they tell you you have pancreatic cancer, they also say it's too late to help you and that's unacceptable," says researcher David Tuveson.

Pancreatic cancer is typically detected at stage 4. One of the Lustgarten Foundation's goals is finding a reliable test for the disease.

"We need an early detection test," says Kerri Kaplan, of the Lustgarten Foundation. "People are saved every day because they have a PSA test or a mammogram. We are working so hard on a test like that for pancreatic cancer."

Attendee Nancy Dintenfass is a part of a small group of pancreatic cancer survivors. Dintenfass is a doctor who was able to catch it at stage 3, earlier than most. She's been in remission for nearly two years.

"It's a rocky journey but hang in there, that's what I tell people. I'm hanging in there," she says.

Other people who took part Sunday have lost loved ones to pancreatic cancer.

The Lustgarten Foundation's goal is to raise $1 million for research. Sunday's donations were still being counted, but at last check, the organization had received more than $860,000.

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