Hundreds don underwear for Undy Run to bring attention to colon cancer

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX -- It was a chilly morning, but some folks still "stripped down" and ran in their underwear for a good cause.

About 1,500 people took to the streets of downtown Phoenix Sunday morning for the Undy Run/Walk. Participants wore underwear over their clothes to bring attention to colon cancer.

"Doing it for my dad," Alexis Terzza said. "He died when I was 2 years old. We've been doing this since it began."

Family and friends were joined by patients and survivors like event chairwoman Janelle Hill. She was diagnosed when she was 35.

"Talk to your folks, talk to your grandparents," Hill said. "Is there any kind of family history? Do you have irritable bowel or any other inflammatory bowel disease which could also increase your risk of colon cancer? Let's have these conversations."

Guidelines say you should have a regular colonoscopy starting at age 50, but if you have a family history get one earlier.

"It is a preventable disease," Hill said. "If those polyps are removed, you're not going to get colon cancer."

Proceeds go toward colon cancer research, education, support and public awareness programs.

"It means a lot to me that so many people support this," Terzza said. "Spread the word and spread the love."