HERSHEY, Pa. (WHTM) – In bone-chilling temperatures, the Hope Express relay teams departed from Penn State Hershey Medical Center’s Children’s Hospital for State College Thursday evening.

Three teams, 39 runners total, are making the nearly 135-mile trek to Penn State over 24 hours.

The run is to raise awareness for the Four Diamonds Fund, the children’s hospital and Penn State’s THON.

The runners are planning to make it to the start of THON, the student-run dance marathon that raises money to help children with pediatric cancer.

The event runs from Friday to Sunday.

“It’s just being a part of something that is bigger than yourself,” relay runner Meghan McNamara said.

Each team has a backpack, which is handed off during the relay. The backpacks are full with inspirational cards and letters from children’s hospital patients. The backpacks will be presented to THON dancers.

Last year the run raised $155,135.

For more information on the Four Diamonds Fund visit: www.fourdiamonds.org