Public memorial set for Sunday for Gordy Klatt, founder of Relay for Life

A public memorial service will be Sunday for Dr. Gordon Klatt, who founded the Relay for Life event.

The celebration of life will begin at 1:30 p.m. at Mount Tahoma High School, 4634 S. 74th St., Tacoma.

Klatt, 71, died Aug. 3 from congestive heart failure after battling stomach cancer for years.

The Tacoma surgeon was best known for starting Relay for Life in 1985 by walking 83 miles around the University of Puget Sound track.

It became the signature event for the American Cancer Society in 1994 and has raised nearly $5 billion. The race now is held in 23 countries.

The memorial service will be live-streamed on TV Tacoma at tvtacoma.com.

Klatt’s family asked that any donations be made to the Gordy Klatt Pay-If Research Endowment Fund, which will support cancer research. Donations can be made at relayforlife.org/gordyklatt.

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