Thanks to the Strides Against Breast Cancer organized by the American Cancer Society, many people have the chance to gather together and share their stories as well as to raise awareness and funds.
Avelina Costello is one of them, a breast cancer survivor who fought back the disease two years ago. Costello and her daughter managed to build up a team of 29 persons who would walk together in the breast cancer event.
Every team member wore a pink t-shirt with the inscriptions ‘Team Ohana.’ Avelina is not the only cancer survivor in the family because two other team members have successfully got rid of the disease as well.
This annual event consists of a walk of between 3 and 5 miles which always gathers around 1,500 participants who donate over $100,000 for treatment and research. Another survivor, Theresa Gitto, is part of the Angio Dynamics team which has 85 members.
The two-year survivor was happy because the team had 65 members in 2015, so twenty more persons joined their noble cause. Gitto said that ‘We have to have our own sign-up table because the company will donate for everyone who walks. They are really good about that.’
The woman received a stage I breast cancer diagnosis on July 21st, 2014 and endured a double mastectomy on September 21st, 2014. After the doctors had been unable to find any signs left of the tumor, Gitto was allowed to have reconstructive surgery.
Other participants, such as Cheri Brooks decided to take a more original approach and dressed as a flamingo. Most survivors underlined that the Cancer Center Charles R Wood at Glens Falls Hospital was one of the best medical facilities where you would find great people ready to assist patients with everything they needed.
According to Darcy Czajka with the ACS, the best part of the event are the teams because they are made of people who have a positive thinking, and they manage to inspire others as well. It is worth mentioning that they also come up with funny names such as ‘Bump’s Babes,’ for instance.
Chajka stresses there are currently 200,000 women who get diagnosed with this life-threatening disease every year, while 40,000 of them die. Also, it has taken its toll on men as well because 2,600 develop this disease each year. Therefore, breast cancer awareness is a highly important prevention step.
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