Thumbs up to October. It’s one of our favorite months. The weather cools. The leaves start to turn all sorts of beautiful colors. Halloween is a fun holiday. Football overlaps with the postseason baseball. Let’s just hope we don’t get heavy rain like we had in October 2015. But we want to bring awareness to some serious news about October. It just doesn’t sound right saying thumbs up to Breast Cancer Awareness Month or thumbs up to Domestic Violence Awareness Month, but we are grateful that a month is set aside to raise awareness about some sobering issues. Purple is the color set aside to call attention to Domestic Violence Month. Sadly, that’s the color of a bruise. Too many women are bruised by men in South Carolina. Bones are broken. At worst, women are killed. In 2014, 43 women were murdered by males in South Carolina. The homicide rate was 1.73 per 100,000. That made our state No. 5 on the list of worst states. As we noted recently, that’s progress for a state that recently was ranked No. 1, but we won’t celebrate until we are ranked fifth from the bottom. At 9 a.m. today, the Pee Dee Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Assault will start its annual Breaking Free 5K/15K Walk/Run to recognize the start of Domestic Violence Month. Registration starts at 8 a.m. at Trinity Presbyterian Church, 1021 S. Ebenezer Road. The registration fee today is $30 for the 5K and $40 for the 15K. We hope the turnout is good. Why not strap on your running shoes and race to the scene to help raise money for a good cause? Pink is the color of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We’re pleased that progress has been made in reducing the rates of cancer victims, but there still is no cure for this terrible disease. On the pages of our new Health & Wellness section that is published each Monday, McLeod Health, Carolinas Hospital System and the Morning News will call attention to the battle against breast cancer. This Monday, look for an article about genetics and breast cancer, plus a column about the decline of breast cancer deaths as a result of early detection. On Oct. 13, look for a Breast Cancer Awareness special section that will feature some local survivors. On Oct. 24, look for what we call our Pink Edition. Parts of the newspaper will be printed on pink paper. Last but hardly least, National Mental illness Awareness Week starts Sunday. It’s a good time to encourage those who are battling depression to seek help. These are all good causes to support. Let’s have a great October.

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