Douglas County was the host of a fundraiser for cancer survivors, called Relay for Life. Among participants are three cancer survivors and a caregiver who share their stories. The event will begin on Friday, July 8th at 6 pm at the Fairgrounds in Douglas County.
The event will feature races, ceremonies, fun activities, music, Zumba, and food. Missy Hanson is a Garfield resident who was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her mother and sister were both diagnosed with the same type of cancer in 2007.
Both women are now healthy. After genetic testing, the three women found that they were carriers of the BRCA 1 gene mutation, which carries a high risk of breast cancer.
Hanson was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2009, and she chose to have a radical hysterectomy. She had a few years of good health. Sadly, in 2014 upon a routine check-up Hanson got the news. She, too, had breast cancer.
The three women opted to have complete mastectomies. All are now free from cancer. They decided to honor their health by taking part in the Relay for Life event.
Hanson challenges prejudice about losing hair and clinging to your job: both seem less important in the face of the disease.
A pastor at a Christian Church in Alexandria, Jeremy Schneider said that he felt blessed for being alive, after going through four chemotherapy stages, surgeries and another eight stages of chemo.
He had a large part of his colon removed during surgery, also a small piece of liver. As a pastor, Schneider put his faith in God, his family and his parish.
He later found out that the doctor had mixed up a healthy part of the liver for a sick part of the liver, and it was not the physician’s first mistake. However, Schneider chose not to sue.
The last story comes from R.C.Christiansen. He was diagnosed with bone cancer as a kid. He endured nasty procedures, such as femur bone replacement, partial hip replacement and 14 rounds of chemotherapy.
He was proud to announce he has been cancer free for nine months. His advice for the others was to trust God and keep on smiling. The American Cancer Society helps to save more than 500 lives a day. They couldn’t do it without the support of thousands of volunteers.
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