The Washington Redskins and Tanya Snyder celebrated their 16th year of "Think Pink" initiatives to help find a cure for breast cancer during the game against the Seattle Seahawks Monday, Oct. 6, 2014, at FedExField.
The Washington Redskins on Monday hosted their annual Breast Cancer Awareness game at FedExField against the Seattle Seahawks.
The Redskins organization was the first in the NFL to bring widespread awareness of breast cancer.
Tanya Snyder, wife of team owner Dan Snyder, used Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October of 1999 to oscillate knowledge to the Redskins fan base in hopes that it would spread across the league.
Now, 16 years later, the NFL is a leader in bringing awareness to a cancer that affects one in every eight women.
Throughout the month, Redskins players are wearing pink-colored accessories including gloves, cleats, compression sleeves and decals, while coaches and referees will be wearing pink game apparel and certain on-field and in-stadium branding components will be colored pink.
Much of the apparel worn at games throughout the month by players and coaches, along with special game balls and pink coins, will be auction off with proceeds benefitting the American Cancer Society's Community Health Advocates National Grants for Empowerment (CHANGE) program.
At Monday's game, fans were given THINK-PINK! ribbons and breast cancer awareness educational materials courtesy Zeta Tau Alpha (ZTA) members.
"I'm so, so, so proud," Snyder said. "Sixteen years, millions of ribbons, and it all started out grassroots with these ZTAs. We would not have a THINK-PINK without these ZTAs. So I am extremely proud.
"One ribbon at a time, they were all put together one person at a time. We are definitely making a difference."
Snyder, a breast cancer survivor herself, made a concerted effort to use the attention the NFL garnishes to help both those who are battling breast cancer and alert others to get checked on a regular basis, as early detection can make a huge difference.
"As long as there's still breast cancer on this earth, there is a need for us making a difference and speaking out about it," Snyder said. "To be a part of the NFL, a part of such a great franchise with the Washington Redskins and to be able to say on the Crucial Catch – early detection does save lives.
"It's a very, very, very important message."
Snyder and the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation, in partnership with the American Cancer Society, hosted the seventh-annual All Star Survivors Celebration at Redskins Park.
Thirty-one area women, each of whom are representing the 31 days of October, who are currently battling breast cancer were at the event celebrating life.
Among the players in attendance were quarterback Robert Griffin III, fullback Darrel Young, tight end Niles Paul, linebacker Adam Hayward and safety Ryan Clark.
Hayward said he wants to do whatever it takes to bring additional awareness to breast cancer.
"Anytime I can help – doing a breast cancer event or just showing my support, whether it's wearing pink or appearing at some event – I definitely want to show my support and continue to help find a cure," he said.