MARIETTA, GA—As part of an ongoing effort to eradicate homosexuality, Cobb County Evangelical Hospital held its fifth annual Walk to Cure Gayness Sunday, drawing thousands of participants to raise funds and awareness for the debilitating psychosexual disease.

Hospital administrators said the remarkably high turnout, which included many survivors and their new opposite-sex spouses, would allow the gayness treatment center to focus on developing new, more effective techniques to cure sufferers of their deviant lifestyle choice.

"Today's walk marks another important step in our continuing battle to make gayness a thing of the past," said hospital president Kenneth P. Strickland, who like many in attendance was wearing a gray ex-gay-awareness ribbon. "Thanks to the groundbreaking research these events make possible, perhaps in 10 or 15 years people who realize they're attracted to members of their own gender can have a shot at leading long, heterosexual lives in the eyes of God."

Well represented among the crowd of walkers in matching "5th Annual Walk to Cure Gayness" collared button-down shirts and khaki slacks were families and friends who had lost loved ones to the illness over the years. As they made their way through downtown Marietta cheered on by volunteers screaming about the evils of sodomy, some took a moment to remember those who had succumbed to the salvation-ending affliction.

Evangelical doctors say new breakthroughs are being made every day to cure the affliction of homosexuality.

"You don't think something like this will ever happen to your family, and then one day your daughter is suddenly taken away from you just like that," said Cheryl Larson, who drove in from nearby Macon with her teenage son and only remaining child. "The doctors told me there was nothing that could have been done to save her, but I feel partially responsible."

"I could have prayed harder. It's something I think about every day," she continued. "And now my Kelly is gone forever. She's in Seattle now."

According to sources, a significant portion of the funding will go toward the purchase of new state-of-the-art gayness treatment equipment such as the YHWH-500, a device that holds one's eyelids open while a patient is forced to read biblical passages denouncing the abomination of homosexuality, and administers a strong electric shock anytime one feels the urge to masturbate to an image of the same sex.

Administrators confirmed that some money will be allocated toward remodeling the hospital's outdated physical therapy center, which, after 14 years of reteaching gay men how to walk properly, "has started to show its age."

The hospital also used the occasion to announce the construction of a new gay pediatric wing, which will cost an estimated $2.6 million to build over the next three years. Officials expressed hope that such a facility would encourage parents to bring in their kids at the first sign of gayness, before it's too late.

"Hopefully, with a dedicated site for homsexual children, we can start diagnosing and treating the disease earlier than ever before," said Strickland, adding that the new wing's decor would adhere to strict gender-conforming norms. "Unfortunately, far too many victims don't get the care they need until well into adolescence, and then by the time they show up at our emergency room their gayness has spiraled out of control."

"It's devastating news no evangelical doctor wants to deliver to a patient's family," he added.

If the number of ex-gays taking part in the walk is any indication, however, Cobb County Evangelical's success stories are growing. Graphic designer Kevin Watson, 36, who was participating in his third Walk to Cure Gayness with his wife, proudly counts himself as one of the survivors.

"I was a goner there for a while, but as you can see I am now happily married to a woman," said Watson, draping an arm around the church organist nine years his senior whom he met and proposed to within months of his release from the hospital. "In spite of my condition, I defied the odds and as of next month my homosexuality will have been in remission for two years."

"I'm taking things one day at a time," he continued. "But right now it just feels great to be around so many incredible guys who went through the same thing."