2 BREAST CANCER AWARENESS Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
IN THEIR WORDS:
Survivors, families, friends JEAN ANDERSEN
Cancer’s effects felt throughout our community The impact on one woman’s or man’s diagnosis reverberates throughout her or his network of family, friends, co-workers and peers. But breast cancer’s lives-altering challenges impact an entire community, as well. The Northwestern asked readers to help us highlight breast cancer’s impact for our inaugural special Breast Cancer Awareness publication. Your tributes, stories, words of encouragement and celebration pay honor and tribute to those who have fought cancer and those who are currently battling it. The goal was to tell the many stories created by a breast cancer diagnosis by relying on the words of those whose lives have been impacted by it. The result is a moving compilation of words of affirmation, gratitude, love and hope. Great care has been taken in producing this special section. Please report errors or omissions to email@example.com. To order additional copies of this section, contact Katy Duzinske at 426-6621.
The 2011 Breast Cancer Awareness tab is published by The Oshkosh Northwestern, 224 State St., Oshkosh, WI 54901. Online: www.thenorthwestern.com.
My journey began in November 2010 with a phone call from my husband saying that he had set up a mammogram for me. You see, I was behind by about two years and we had this deal, he would do a colonoscopy and I would do a mammogram. Well you guessed it, I didn't do mine. So a week later I went in for my mammogram. Later that day I got the dreaded phone call that I needed to come back. I was scheduled the next day for another mammogram, an ultrasound, and a biopsy. At that time they showed me what they were looking at and I just knew it wasn't good. A couple of days later they called and said yes it was cancer. Next we were scheduled to see the doctor who informed us of all our options. After further testing I was scheduled for surgery. I was able to do a lumpectomy, however it had spread to my lymph nodes so they were removed as well. That would mean chemo and radiation treatments. I finished everything in July and am proud to say I am a survivor and on the road to recovery. It wasn't easy but staying positive helped. Also, I don't know where I would have been without my faith, family, and friends. The support from all meant a lot to me. Also, I owe my husband a huge thank you because if he wouldn't have made that appointment I don't know where this would have went.
Also, thanks to the staff at Aurora. They were wonderful at helping us get through this!
very proud of her. We thank God that she is cancer free now and she is able to still be with us.
My mother is one of the bravest women I know. A 2+ year breast cancer survivor. Thank God for your courage and strength. You are my inspiration. I love you very much. All my love, Jenn. Xoxo.
Contributed by Jennifer Brown
SYLVIA BORSECNIK & DOLORES ENGEL
To my mom, Sylvia Borsecnik, and my mother-in-law, Dolores Engel: fighters both and survivors of breast cancer.
Contributed by Mary Borsecnik
This tribute is to my mother, Susan. My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in her middle 50s. First person in our family to be diagnosed. My mother who was and still is very brave and courageous. She battled through the severe adverse reactions from the chemotherapy that landed her in the E.R. every single time. I pray to God that myself or my children don't ever have to go through what my mother had to endure, but I know if we do we will be able to be brave and strong just like her, because of what my mother was able to show us. My children and I love my mother very much and are
Contributed by Stephanie Chiafos
Becky is a nursing supervisor in the Aurora Medical Center clinic. She is a cancer survivor as well as her husband. Becky even started a not-for-profit group called The Necessities Bag — a bag that is made up of community donations for the patient who is diagnosed with breast cancer. These bags are given free of charge to those affected and has wonderful gifts and helpful hints inside, which can help make the process just a little easier. Becky can also share a wonderful story about a US Bank employee who volunteers for her and made hundreds upon hundreds of pillows for those bags — then she got cancer and still kept on with the pillows — right up to her death. Her name was Connie Protz. In her memory people are making those pillows so the bags can go on. Connie was a community volunteer who made a huge difference in life and death.
Contributed by John Nieman
Ever since I was a kid, I feared the big "C." I never talked about cancer, read any articles on cancer or watched a program on TV about cancer. January 29, 2001
the dreaded call came and my life was changed forever. I was home alone. My biopsy was positive and I had breast cancer. It was now time to face and to fight the big "C." I started reading everything I could get my hands on. The computer and its information was my new friend. My oncologist was the greatest. He answered every question I had and explained in detail every procedure I was going to go through. The nurses in the Chemo Department are “God’s Angels.” They were the kindest people I have ever met. Because I am very fortunate, I have the very best family and friends anyone could ever ask for! They were there supporting and encouraging me through my adventure. There were times life was not easy especially during my Chemo times. It is hard to believe but there were times I was not very pleasant to be around. My support group listened to me and gave me the push to finish all the treatments. I am now a “10 Year Cancer Survivor”! Cancer made me appreciate life with a different set of eyes. I now savor and truly enjoy life to the fullest extent. A big thank you to my family and all my friends! Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance.
“I pray to God that myself or my children don’t ever have to go through what my mother had to endure, but I know if we do we will be able to be brave and strong just like her, because of what my mother was able to show us. My children and I love my mother very much and are very proud of her. We thank God that she is cancer free now and she is able to still be with us.” STEPHANIE CHIAFOS, daughter of Susan Chiafos
Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
portive, uplifting, and funny cards, call and text to let them know you There have been countless blessare thinking of them, and spend ings since I found my tumor at age time with them. Finally, continue to 37 last spring. Finding the tumor was the very first blessing. Had I not pray and to look for God's blessings around you. The blessing might just found that tumor then, it would be finding the cancer so you can still be growing and spreading fight it and be a survivor. throughout my body. Early detection meant I didn’t have to have chemotherapy or radiation. What a KOMEN 3DAY FOR THE CURE In the summer of 2010, I trained blessing that self exam turned out for the Susan Komen 3Day for the to be! I was blessed with compasCure, a 60 mile walk to support sionate caregivers at Aurora, so breast cancer research. I walked many of them breast cancer surhundreds of miles to get my body vivors themselves. I was blessed ready for the three with each and grueling days of every family memwalking in Chicago’s ber, friend, cosummer heat. “This “Continue to worker, acquainis nothing,” I told tance, and even pray and to myself, “compared some people I to the journey of look for God's don't know. having breast canThey followed blessings cer.” Little did I my journey with know, the very next around you. interest, love, and summer, I was to prayer. They The blessing join the ranks of cheered me on those diagnosed might just be through their with breast cancer. guestbook entries finding the And I was only 37 on my Caringyears old. I wasn’t cancer so you Bridge website and very good about sent cards to my can fight it doing self-exams, home. I looked forbut someone I know and be a ward to those meshad just been diagsages every day! survivor.” nosed so I thought Friends offered to I’d do a quick check. cook for us, mow JENNIFER COOK, I called my doctor our lawn, and take the very next day. Breast cancer survivor care of our dogs. After a few tests, I My husband was got the phone call. the most impor“You have cancer,” tant blessing of all. the nurse said. “But He cried for me, you’re going to be fine.” I don’t recomforted me, asked countless member much of what else she said, questions of the doctors, bathed but we had to meet with the surme, changed bandages, and congeon the very next day. That night stantly told me how great I was was awful. I couldn’t eat and I woke doing and how good I looked!! up with violent trembling throughMen, THIS is how you support a out the night. woman with breast cancer. It wasn’t until about an hour into So let’s continue to support peothe meeting with the surgeon that I ple who are having hard times of realized I felt calm and was ready to any kind, not just cancer. Send sup-
AT A GLANCE
EARLY DETECTION PLAN
Beginning at age 20: Performing »B breast self-exams and looking for any signs of change. Age 20 to 39: Scheduling clinical breast »A exams every three years. By the age of 40: Having a baseline mammo»B gram and annual clinical breast exams. Ages 40 to 49: Having a mammogram every »A one to two years depending on previous findings. Ages 50 and older: Having a mammogram every »A year. All Ages: Recording personal exams, mammograms and doctors' »A appointments on a calendar or in a detailed file; Maintaining a healthy weight, following a low-fat diet, getting regular exercise, quitting smoking, and reducing alcohol consumption. Source: National Breast Cancer Foundation, www.nationalbreastcancer.org
eat. We had a plan now and I felt better. Surgery was scheduled a few weeks later. I had opted for a bilateral mastectomy even though a lumpectomy with radiation would have done the trick. The tumor was small, but I just felt so strongly that getting rid of all of the breast tissue would put my mind at ease. Thankfully, they were able to get the entire tumor and the cancer had not spread through my lymph nodes. Chemotherapy and Radiation were not necessary for me. I will continue to have hormone therapy for the next five years. I plan to walk the Komen 3Day again in 2012 — this time as a Survivor.
Amber DeVoe was the 2010 recipient of the Real Men Wear Pink fundraising efforts. She was just 25 at the time of her first diagnosis in 2002. After two battles with breast cancer and at only 35 years of age, Amber has overcome more obstacles than most people will overcome in a lifetime. You have probably
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2010 Reader Poll Awards
BREAST CANCER AWARENESS 3
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seen Amber around town lately as she has been featured in Affinity Health Systems "Together Against Cancer" promotional campaign. We are very proud of Amber for embracing her situation and working hard to increase awareness of this terrible disease.
Contributed by Real Men Wear Pink: Mike Duron, Jodi Duron, Lisa Curtis, Kathryn Hable, Jennifer Ruetten
One day my mom (Sylvia Fisher) showed up at my house and told me she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She said she would have a lumpectomy, followed by radiation. She didn't cry or appear upset, she just stated the fact. Simply put, she was not going to let cancer run her life. Mom didn't let her bout with cancer get her down. She is a very strong person. She did what she had to do and has been cancer free for 11 years now ... yeah!
Contributed by Kim Williams
½ year cancer survivor. I was diagnosed in November of 2006. When the mammography tech asked me to wait to have the radiologist check the films and she did not come back right away, and when they asked me to do further tests, I knew something was wrong. I had all the tests, biopsy, pet scan and MRI. I found out that I had Grade 3 of 3 breast cancer. Now I needed to decide which option I wanted to take. I was not sure what to do. I thought “how could this have happened to me?” There was no way I was ready to check out! I had one grandchild that I wanted to see grow up. I had to beat this! I decided to have the lumpectomy surgery and remove lymph nodes under my right arm pit. My surgery was scheduled for January 7, 2007, and everything went well. I was only off work for about three weeks. I started my chemotherapy on January 25, 2007 and did radiation simultaneously for 30 days. I would have my chemotherapy on
My name is Deborah Fox. I am a 4
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4 BREAST CANCER AWARENESS Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
and work in the garden and spoils us like crazy.
Contributed by Cody and Connor Wheeler
Continued from Page 3 Thursday afternoon, take Friday off and work half days Monday and Tuesday. I could not have gotten through this without my family, friends, new friends that I have made the past 4 ½ years, the people I work with and last but not least, Fleurette Wrasse, who is the Breast Care Coordinator for Aurora. Little did I know that she would be the person who helped me get through this ordeal the most, since she herself is a cancer survivor, the endless number of phone calls and conversations that we had helped me out tremendously! She is a godsend to each and every person that she comes into contact with through her daily job! In the end, having had breast cancer had made me a stronger person, having had to deal with such adversity, the things that I believe made a difference was keeping a positive mental attitude, still continuing to work, carrying on a normal day to day life as much as I was physically able, being able to share my story with people that I had come in contact with in my daily life and in my job, having had to overcome adversity, such as the various side effects of the chemotherapy and radiation and deciding that I was not going to let these setbacks get the best of me. No matter what I still came to work with a smile and always did the best job that I could!
Our Gramma is a breast cancer survivor. She had breast cancer way before we were born, when our mom was only a teenager. We are so happy that Gramma beat cancer. We love her a lot. Gramma lets us cook with her and water her plants
My sister was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002, but has been cancer-free for nine years now. My sister, my life … Sharon is living her life to the fullest today. I thank God she is with us today. I am proud of my sister. She helps others; she makes me smile Goodacre and laugh. I look up to her. She is always thinking positive. You can dress up little girls in pink, but when I hear the word cancer I wear the color of pink to honor loved ones. Walk with them to the end. My prayers are with you all, I will walk with you. I love you Sharon. Love your sister, Roxanne. Friends for life today, tomorrow and forever in my heart!
Contributed by Roxanne Nelson
Sisters are often similar in many ways. Never did I think my younger sister would follow in my footsteps and develop breast cancer as I did. For 36 days she drove from Oshkosh to Appleton for her radiation treatments, after working all day. I am very proud of her. She has been cancer free for seven years.
Contributed by Sylvia Fisher, Oshkosh
May 28, 2008 was the date I heard those words that no one ever wants to hear – “you have cancer.” A few days later I had my first appointment with the doctor to learn all about this disease. During the
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Sandy Hollnagel at the finish line of her first triathlon. SUBMITTED PHOTO
two hour session, I cried twice. Once was when I was told I would need chemotherapy; the second time was when I was told I wouldn’t be doing any triathlons that summer. I had been training since January for my first ‘tri’ and was devastated when I found out I couldn’t do it. I remember driving home from that appointment and just sitting in my van and crying it all out. I was in for the fight of my life. And that’s exactly what I did. I fought and I won. I had surgery, chemo, and radiation. I then had five more surgeries over the course of three years. People repeatedly said I was so strong but yet that’s not how I felt at the time. They just didn’t see me during my weak times. But I had many weak times — that’s what chemo does to you. Now, looking back at it, I realize that I was strong. But really, I just did what had to be done. I am now three years out and doing well. I am proud to say that I have since completed my first
triathlon. In fact, I have done nine of them! And every time I cross that finish line, I think to myself how cancer can’t keep me down. I beat you cancer! If anyone out there reading this is in the midst of their own journey, please feel free to call me (2338548). I would love to be a support person to you. When I was in the hospital getting my port put in so I could receive my chemo drugs, a nurse approached me. She wasn’t my nurse, but she had seen that I was in to get a port and she had recently just gone through her own cancer experience. She talked to me and gave me emotional support. She also left me her phone number. I called her several times when I had questions. It was so helpful to have someone to talk to that had been there, done that. Thank you Karen! And to all of you out there that are going through it right now — hang in there. You can beat it!!
Contributed by Sandy Hollnagel
Four years and three months ago, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Found on a routine mammogram, there was no lump that I could feel, but I could see it on the ultrasound. The biopsy confirmed the results, and a lumpectomy was scheduled. The cancer had spread to two of my lymph nodes, as well as throughout my breast, so I then elected to have a bilateral mastectomy with no reconstruction. Following that, I had chemotherapy for six months. Were it not for my husband, children, family and friends, I don't believe that I would continue to be a survivor today. Early detection and action is so important, as is continued research to help in the fight. I am grateful to God for the opportunity to spend more time with those that I love. Every day is a gift ... for every one of us.
PHYLLIS L. LEACH
Loving, giving, living life, and surviving just begin to describe my mother-in-law, Phyllis L. Leach, a 17year breast cancer survivor. She had just lost my father-in-law, David C. Leach, six months ago to cancer and was now facing the same fate. With strength, dignity, courage and a positive attitude she has shown our family, friends, and the community that breast cancer Leach will not stop her from participating and enjoying life to the fullest. Our daughter, Kelsey, was only 7 years old when her Nana was diagnosed. They laughed and played with colorful scarves and hats to cover the hair loss from chemo and radiation. Phyllis has taught us to look good on the outside even if you don’t feel good on the inside. Always greet the day with a smile and a prayer to thank God for another day. Through this life-altering experience Phyllis has given of her time to numerous organizations such as the Breast Cancer Recovery Foundation and the International Breast Cancer Research Foundation. She has facilitated breast cancer retreats and accompanied her oncologist on several trips to Vietnam as he performed studies of different treatments for breast cancer. Phyllis has reached out her hand and heart to many women diagnosed with breast cancer to reassure them they, too, can survive. Thank you Phyllis for being a true inspiration to accept the life we have been given and the courage to face the future. We love you!
Contributed by Susan Ruetten Leach
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Breast Cancer is the beginning of learning how to fight and find hope. 4-Year Breast Cancer Survivor
Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
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6 BREAST CANCER AWARENESS Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
AT A GLANCE
BREAST CANCER RISK FACTORS While no one knows the exact causes of breast cancer, research has shown that women with certain risk factors are more likely than others to develop the disease.
Risk factors for breast cancer include:
Age: Half of all women diagnosed are »A more than age 65. Weight: Being obese or overweight. »W Diet & Lifestyle: Lack of physical activity, a »D diet high in saturated fat, and alcoholic intake of more than two drinks per day. Menstrual & Reproductive History: Early »M menstruation or late menopause, having your first child at an older age or not having given birth, or taking birth control pills for more than 10 years if you are younger than 35. »FFamily & Personal History: A family history of breast cancer-particularly a mother, sister. or a personal history of breast cancer of benign (non-cancer) breast disease.
Medical & Other Factors: Dense breast tis»M sue (often identified by a mammogram), past radiation therapy to the breast or chest area. A history of hormone treatments — such as estrogen and progesterone, or gene changes — including BRCA1, BRCA2 and others. Source: National Breast Cancer Foundation, www.nationalbreastcancer.org
After my mammogram in February 1994, I was told there was a questionable area in my right breast. The radiologist said “not to worry – we will take another look in six months.” I insisted on another mammogram now. Then I made an appointment with my surgeon. We decided to do the biopsy now. With my family history – my mother, grandmother and two maternal great aunts all died of breast cancer. I felt I was an accident waiting to happen. Fortunately I did as the biopsy was positive. Four days later I had a mastectomy – a lumpectomy was not an option as the tumor was large and had ill-defined margins – Stage 3+ and there were nine positive lymph nodes. This was followed by six months of chemotherapy, 7 ½ weeks of radiation, and then tamoxifen. I continue to see my oncologist in Madison every three months and I am still on tamoxifen. My message to all: DO NOT WAIT SIX MONTHS IF THERE IS A QUESTION. HAVE THE BIOPSY ASAP. I would like to share with you the prayer I have greeted every day with for 17 ½ years: “Dear Jesus, I thank you for this day of survival and allowing me to be. I ask your guidance that I may live this day in your image and likeness.”
Lori Markham is a wife, a daughter, a sister, a aunt, a fighter, a SURVIVOR! She was diagnosed with stage three invasive ductal carcinoma breast cancer. She then had a mastectomy on August 14th, 2007. There after she went through the strongest chemotherapy four different times, and a month long of radiation. It was a painful exhausting battle but through it all she attended church services in her beautiful colored hats. She then lost all of her hair but with some prayers it soon grew in thick and curly! She is someone who always puts others first and is always there when you need a shoulder to lean on. She is a animal lover and had her kitties by her side.
She did all of this while her house was being remodeled. From choosing colors to put on her walls to sitting in radiation sessions, she fought and SURVIVED! She is beautiful inside and out and we are glad she is here with all of us today. She should wear an “S” on her chest for “SUPERWOMAN!” We love you Lori. Love, Danielle, Rachelle, and Tammy Clark and Mother Jenny Buck
Contributed by Danielle Clark
MARY BETH MATHE, FOUR THANKFUL SISTERS
My family knows of breast cancer. Seven girls: three have had double mastectomies, and one had the MammoSite surgery. We thank everyone for their prayers and support, the doctors for their expertise, and we thank God for sparing our lives. Now we all live one day at a time, and hope and pray: no more cancer.
Contributed by Mary Beth Mathe
I was feeling crappy about an approaching birthday and being middleaged. Relationship troubles caused me to wake up and start taking care of myself. I lost a few pounds. Scheduled that dreaded female exam that had been put off for several years. I received a clean bill of health and was told it’s time to get a baseline mammogram. I left the doctor’s office thinking, “I’m surprisingly healthy.” Three weeks later, I had the routine mammogram. Four weeks later heard the words, “You have cancer." Thereby joining a club that nobody wants to join. Concerns raced through my head that I wouldn’t get to see my son grow up, what kind of man would he become? No retirement to enjoy. I turned 40 three months ago and was fighting for my life because my own breasts turned against me. How could that be? I had no symptoms and was too young to be dying! Feared losing my hair. How would people look at me? A friend told me, “in the scheme of things that is not what people nor I should care about”
Lori Markham and family. SUBMITTED PHOTOS
“(Lori Markham) is someone who always puts others first and is always there when you need a shoulder to lean on. ... She is beautiful inside and out and we are glad she is here with all of us today. She should wear an ‘S’ on her chest for ‘SUPERWOMAN!’” DANIELLE CLARK
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Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern and was he right! Time to battle. Chemo was horrible! Poison to the body. I managed with support, church, comfort foods, cute hats and scarves. However ... my lack of vanity stopped there! Weight gain, losing eyelashes and eyebrows almost put me over the edge! Every woman should take advantage of the Look Good Feel Better program free through American Cancer Society. I received wonderful products, learned about skincare, makeup tricks including pencil applied eyebrows, how to tie headscarves and hat/ wig options. I’m proud the pink ribbon has defined a part of me. It shows strength, courage, love and an appreciation for life that I didn’t know I had. I met wonderful people through this journey. Received awesome kindness, love and support from my husband, family, friends and strangers – gifts to give back. My message: take an active part in your health care and get checked! Early detection makes a difference in the number of birthdays celebrated! God works in mysterious ways – something negative
could be a life-saver.
Grandma “Be Tough. Be Brave.” My life forever changed on Thursday, February 18, 2010 at 3:45 p.m. That was the day I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I went through shock, disbelief, cried, yelled at God. Why me? What did I do? My granddaughter was only 2 and I won’t see her graduate or get married. I didn’t smoke or drink. I exercised. How do you call family and friends and say “I have breast cancer”? My daughter, Sara, called to check on me that weekend after my diagnosis. I avoided her and would hang up because I was crushed every time I heard my granddaughter, Meradeth, in the background. On Sunday we all went to church. Meradeth sat on my lap and hugged me the whole service. I looked at the cross and knew Meradeth would be my reason to fight. My earth angel! I put my cancer care in God’s hands and came to peace with it. My husband, Bob, said breast can-
Charlotte Nigbor. SUBMITTED PHOTO cer was our fight. Nobody could take the pain, but they would be by my side. My husband, daughter and granddaughter went with me everywhere. My son, Eric, shaved his head. Steven, the youngest, showed me how to tie my bandana because he once had long hair. My granddaughter watched the chemo go into Grandma’s “bump” (chemo port) and would say “Grandma, be tough & be brave.” She went the day of my surgery. “Grandma, be tough & be brave” as they wheeled me away. She gave Dr. Kiefer a high five after my
BREAST CANCER AWARENESS 7
lumpectomy. She saw how the ladies in radiation, that become like sisters to me, set me up on the radiation table with grandma’s 3 purple dots (medical tattoos). She liked the radiation doctor’s waiting room because it had doughnuts. She ran to get her sprinkle doughnut. Cancer changed my life. I went from being shy and quiet to being outgoing, can do anything kind of person. If you can face the world bald and fight cancer, you can do anything. God is working through me with cancer. I run into or get calls from people whose friends have been diagnosed or they get diagnosed a few months later. I started a support group at church and encourage others who are battling cancer. I call, visit and send cards that always include the greeting, “Be Tough & Be Brave!”
Prior to my sister’s wedding three years ago, her future husband told her to get an exam. Found out she was in stage 2. Thanks to him she
caught it in time. Now she’s been cancer-free since then. I’m very grateful to him.
Contributed by Allan Krohn
This is a tribute to one of the strongest women I know. Renee you have been through so much and yet walk away with a smile on your face. You have shown not only myself Nitschke but many others the strength it takes to make it though something so difficult. You are truly an honor to have as such a great friend. May you always know how much you mean to so many people.
Contributed by Karly Schwalbach
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8 BREAST CANCER AWARENESS Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
Six year breast cancer survivor. You’re an inspiration to others, Sue.
Contributed by Sheila Gumz
My battle started with breast cancer 2 1/2 yrs ago. If it was not for my 4 kids, Wendy, Kelly, Annette and John, and God I would not have made it through. I went through three surgeries, radiation it was a trying time because I was not only going through it but my sister was going through it as well and she was in another state and I could not be their to hold her hand and tell her it was going to be OK or pray with her. The worst was not knowing if I was going to make it through all of it. At each stage I had to go for tests to see if I was in remission I prayed then held my breath and God brought me out. I am not a victim I am a survivor and proud. And after going through this I know I can get through anything.
A year ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer – what a shock. I found out it had to be treated with surgery and chemotherapy, and radiation. This started to feel like an out of body experience and I was dazed and felt this could not be happening to me. Reality sinks in real fast and no time is wasted on this journey. This journey has left me with many different emotions and I wish to thank the people who helped me through it. It started with different tests that we’re not much fun and very scary, I remember my angel in disguise named Fleurette, who discussed and explained and most of all held my hand through the start of biopsies and surgery. Thank you, you will never know what your presence did for me. Dr. Kiefer, also you deserve a big thank you, you made me feel very sure of my surgery decision and I definitely felt in good hands. I never did doubt that you
were thinking of me and really wanted to help. Thank you Dr. Dubek, I appreciate that you were in my corner also, I also felt I was in good hands, I was very pleased with the results and made the next part of the journey more durable, thank you. The next part of this journey called for healing and then chemotherapy. Chemotherapy, can we talk scared, but if you ever met the staff at Dr. Dar’s office, you would be put at ease once. These ladies are so upbeat and energetic that I would feel bad if I did have a complaint. Kind of strange that I would look forward to coming to visit people who for the next week after my visit made me feel like death. They had all the answers to get me through this and I did. Thank you, Dr. Dar and everyone at his office. I survived, although it would have been nice if you have solved that hair loss problem, I guess it did make getting ready in the morning go faster. Next comes radiation, can I say sci-fi feeling? I experienced my first tattoos although not too visible, Dr. Hsie and staff were wonderful. Where does Aurora get these wonderful people? I also looked forward to seeing these girls every morning for many weeks, what is wrong with me. I was one of the lucky ones, for radiation was gentle on me and I was able to sail through it. Thank you for all you did. I want to give a thank you to all my friends, clients and co-workers, your cards, kind thoughts and deeds, and prayers, kept me going and kept me smiling. I also wanted to thank my mentor, Holly, from ABCD. You have been there and you knew just what to say and what I felt – thank you. Most of all my husband and family, you saw the ugly part and still loved me. I could not have gone through this without you, I love you all and thank you. A year ago, I was a different person. Now I hope with all the life changing events I have been through and the people who
I have met and have been there for me, I can spread the love and laughter and hopefully be healed. Breast cancer will not defeat me.
On April 14, 2003, I heard the words no one wants to hear, "You have breast cancer." I then began my journey with a lumpectomy, chemotherapy and radiation at Mercy Medical Center. I had wonderful care by Dr. Karen Gremminger and Dr. Michael Foley and their loving staff. My Christian faith sustained me through those days, and the Lord led me through that valley and I am now a survivor. I know I am a stronger Christian because of this. Since 2004 I have been a Reach to Recovery volunteer, helping other women face their diagnosis and survive. To God be the glory!
Fleurette is a nurse in Aurora Medical Center’s Cancer Services/ Mammography. You ask any patient or family member about Fleurette and they will tell you what an angel she is. Yes it is her job but she goes above and beyond. I can tell you that first hand with my own experience with my 22-year-old daughter who found a lump. Fleurette will call you at home, evenings and weekends just to lend an ear for support or encouragement. She makes the process so much more bearable.
Contributed by John Nieman
A radiology technician registered nurse conducts a mammogram for a patient in 2009 at Mercy Medical Center. NORTHWESTERN FILE PHOTO
Annual breast exams, mammograms still key By Amanda Gardner HealthDay
Contrary to some other findings, new research indicates that mammograms and breast selfexams are useful for the detection of breast cancer, including cancers in younger women. “Annual screening mammographies and evaluations of palpable masses are important tools for breast cancer detection,” said Dr. Jamie Caughran, co-author of a study presented at the 2011 Breast Cancer Symposium in San Francisco last month. This report is the latest volley in an ongoing controversy about the utility of mammograms and selfexams, particularly in younger women. In 2009, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force set off a furor when it recommended that women wait until the age of 50 before having regular mammograms, and even then they counseled that mammograms should take place once every two
years rather than annually. Previously, most guidelines had recommended that women start annual mammograms at age 40. These authors reviewed data on almost 6,000 women in Michigan, average age 59, who had been diagnosed with breast cancer. They found that twothirds of tumors were found on a mammography and 30 percent by feel, either from a breast self-exam (90 percent) or from a doctor’s exam (10 percent). For women under the age of 50, 48 percent of cancers were detected by mammography and 46 percent by feel. Women whose tumors were found by feel tended to be younger than those whose masses were found by mammography (59 vs. 61). But these tumors tended to be at a later stage than those detected by mammography.
AT A GLANCE
LOWER RISK While doctors are still trying to understand what causes breast cancer, experts say there are ways to reduce risk. »Maintain a healthy weight. »Limit alcohol consumption. »Reduce unnecessary radiation exposure, such as from CT scans. »Avoid or limit use of hormone replacement therapy. Long-term use has been linked to ovarian, breast cancers. »Have your first child before age 30. »Breast-feed as long as possible. »If you're at high risk talk to your doctor about breast cancer medications such as tamoxifen or raloxifene. American Cancer Society
Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
AT A GLANCE
SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
Generally, early breast cancer does not cause pain. Even so, a woman should see her health care provider about breast pain or any other breast cancer symptoms that do not go away. Common signs and symptoms of breast cancer include: A change in how »A the breast or nipple feels — You may experience nipple tenderness or notice a lump or thickening in or near the breast or in the underarm area. A change in how »A the breast or nipple looks — This could mean a change in the size or shape of the breast or a nipple that is turned slightly inward. In addition, the skin of the breast, areola or nipple may appear scaly, red or swollen or may have ridges or pitting that resembles the skin of an orange. »Nipple discharge
ON THE WEB
»For information, videos and articles about what to do post-diagnosis, see www.nationalbreastcancer.org and http://beyondtheshock.com. Source: National Breast Cancer Foundation, www.nationalbreastcancer.org
BREAST CANCER AWARENESS 9
WORDS OF REMEMBRANCE
Families, friends feel losses MARY ACQUARULO CAPUANO
My mother in law was the best. While she was ill herself she was a caretaker for her mom and was always there for her family. She died at a young age of 49. She is greatly missed. Her grandchildren that she never saw missed a great woman.
Contributed by Kathleen Capuano
JULIE E. ALLEN ODLE
The daughter of John R. and Lois (Brusius) Allen, the Allenville area of Oshkosh. A graduate of the Winneconne schools and UW-Oshkosh, majoring in art and biology. She moved to Tucson, Ariz., where she married Robert Odle and raised two daughters. The family lived in Texas, South Carolina, Peru, Australia, wherever Robert’s profession took him and finally to Maryland. Julie was active in the communities where the family lived. Julie had a mammogram in 2007 which showed two black spots. One was a blocked milk duct, the other: CANCER. The breast was removed and replaced. A lung X-ray in 2008 for asthma showed a dark spot: CANCER. Treatment by X-ray therapy: cured. But a cat scan showed cancer in the brain. More therapy. She and Robert came home for her mother’s memorial service, cheerful with a big smile. Her wavy, auburn hair now black, decorated with two dozen pink ribbons. Returning to Maryland she had vision problems and difficulty walking. An immediate MRI, checked by her oncologist, showed damage to her spinal column: CANCER, incurable. A coma and death three months later.
Contributed by John R. Allen
Lori was the most courageous person I know. She fought breast cancer for 9 years and at the age of 39 lost her battle in September of 2010. She was a great mother, daughter, sister and best friend anyone could ever ask for. She was the most caring person and would go out of her way to do anything for anyone.
I will never forget Lori and all of the happy times that we shared together. Although I miss my best friend so much every day, I know that she is now pain free.
bers and her daughter was a match, she has the surgery and comes out all right. Then 4 years later she develops breast cancer. She goes through all the treatments and even up to the end she never gave up hope. May 16, 2001 — She was my hero!
Contributed by Amy Stibb
Helen had cancer for the first time at age 44. At the time she had five children under the age of 6 at home. For her there was no choice but to fight and beat cancer. She decided to have a single mastectomy. She was cancer free for 33 years until a yearly mammogram detected a small lump. Once again Helen fought and beat breast cancer. Helen was a woman of deep faith. Bishop She would credit God with all the wonderful things in her life. Helen loved her husband, children, and grandchildren. She lived a long and happy life. She passed away from other causes at the age of 78 in 2003. She is missed by her family, but her strength and legacy live on. We know she watches all of us from heaven.
Contributed by Michelle Rondinelli
In loving memory of my eldest daughter Carrie Sadlak DeBartolo, 42, who lost her 12-year battle on March 20, 2011, leaving her sister Jill with her two beautiful daughters, Mary and Jenna. Her memory will live with us forever.
Contributed by Mike Sadlak
WILMA LOUISE GOLDSMITH
In loving memory of our Mother, Grandmother, Sister, Aunt, and Friend, a 10 year cancer survivor, who was taken by cancer Nov. 2, 2006 at age 86.
Contributed by Gloria Domskie
MARY E. KUEHNL
Goldsmith Contributed by Linda Lindell
Our mother and grandmother fought breast cancer, she fought it with all her strength and she went through chemo and radiation. We felt her pain and shared our tears. … She lost the battle in 1996, but she will Goodacre always be in our hearts. We miss you and love you very much! Love, Roxanne and Sharon, grandchildren and great-grandchildren
Contributed by Roxanne Nelson.
DONALD F. HOEFS
I’d like to say what a loving father my dad was, kind and thoughtful of others. He was a fair dad to me and my sister, especially on our B-days. It was very hard to lose him and we miss him a lot.
Contributed by Dawn Anderson
DELORES (GUTCHE) (BESAW) JANSKY
My sister has had a tough time in her life. First, one of her kidneys goes bad and she has to go on a kidney dialysis machine. Her daughter was tested, along with other family mem-
One of the greatest blessing in my life is the gift of friendship I received from Mary Kuehnl. Through the twenty three years we knew each other, this gift was unwrapped and shared over cups of coffee, lessons on antiques, great meals, Kuehnl conversations about life, love, and God. When Mary's family grew to include a son, we shared stories through the years of toddler mishaps, school adventures, and long term parenting. We were co-workers, roommates, friends, and confidants. Mary had a generous heart, a loving spirit, a gentle presence. Mary entered into eternal life in December 2005, but she still lives on in my heart. Every Christmas season, I continue to unwrap her gift of friendship in new ways and thank God for allowing me to be a part of her journey.
Contributed by Sheri Graeber
In memory of Don Krueger, great husband, wonderful father, and fun grandpa. Breast cancer — February 2003, PMNST (Peripheral Malignant Nerve Sheath Tumor in right leg — January 2008, lung cancer and return of PMNST — August 2008. Passed away in February 2009.
Contributed by his family; wife, daughters, and grandchildren.
10 BREAST CANCER AWARENESS Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern meant to me and everything she taught me. Finally, I’d thank her for showing me how to die with dignity and without ever giving up. My sister Trudi was my best friend. She is my hero.
In loving memory of Christina who passed away from cancer. Your family all love you so much and will never forget you for as long as we live. May we all meet in heaven and be together some day. You were so loved and are missed so much. Your mother, grandchildren and all your children. Rest in peace, we always love you.
Contributed by Amy McBriar Herrmann
TRUDI JEAN MCBRIAR POWERS
Contributed by Olga Tauschmann
Words often aren’t enough to express the amount of love we have for someone. Trying to fit all of our love to you in words isn’t enough. For the past 22 years you have been our angel, our guidance and our love. You’ve given us days filled with sunshine and nights full of starry skies. You were taken from us too soon and everyday we think of you wishing that you could be with us. You fought long and hard and being at rest is where you deserve to be. However, today I would give anything to meet you. I would give anything to see you hug my mom and I would give anything to feel your embrace. Mom always says how much you would love me, Grandma. I know you love me and guide me from heaven daily. You aren’t only our angel but our hero. We all miss you. A day doesn’t pass that we don’t think of you. You were truly a special part of all our lives. You taught us to love unconditionally and the bond we have will never be broken. All our love until we meet again.
Contributed by Delynn and Tori Nordhaus
Phyllis Lockard-Hughes was the 2011 recipient of the Real Men Wear Pink fundraising efforts. She
From left, Jennifer Ruetten, Mike Duron, Phyllis Lockard-Hughes, Kathryn Hable, Lisa Curtis and Jodi Duron. SUBMITTED PHOTO was diagnosed just one year ago and bravely fought the disease, but ultimately lost her battle on August 28, 2011 at only 54 years of age. Everyone involved with our organization including the organizers and volunteers are grateful to have met Phyllis even if it was only for a short time. We are happy that we were able to make her feel special. She was a great dancer and a wonderful woman. She will be greatly missed.
Contributed by Real Men Wear Pink: Mike Duron, Jodi Duron, Lisa Curtis, Kathryn Hable, Jennifer Ruetten
TRUDI JEAN MCBRIAR POWERS
My sister Trudi was my best friend. She understood me — understood where I came from. When Trudi went to Heaven she took a piece of my soul with her. I often think about what I would say if I had one more chance to talk with her. I would tell her how amazing her kids have turned out in the six years since the breast cancer took her from us. Her son is sen-
sitive and smart, kind and generous. Her daughter is so beautiful, warm, outgoing and loving. Sometimes she looks so much like her mom it takes my breath away! I’d tell her that I kept my promises. I never miss an opportunity to tell her kids stories about her. We’d marvel at the how our brother and sister-in-law have become such fantastic parents. I’d remind her that they learned it from her. I’d tell her how much I miss her and that I think about her every day. I’d tell her how angry I was, and still am, with God that He took her away from her children and her family because I never once doubted that He could have healed her, but He chose not to. I’d tell her that I still didn’t know why God called her home, what good has become of it. I wish I could have that one last conversation with her. I wish that if I did, I’d be smart enough to keep quiet and let her tell me about Heaven and what we have to look forward to. I would thank her for everything she
My brother-in-law always wanted a tattoo. His wife, my sister Trudi, always said “No way! Why would you want to do that?” Until the day they tattooed her for radiation therapy. Trudi was 13 when our mom died of breast cancer, I was only 7. She was 29 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. A mother herself, she knew the pain of losing her mom and she fought the disease with every fiber of her being to spare her children that pain. Not only did she fight the cancer, she fought through the pain of the mastectomy and the reconstruction. She fought through the chemotherapy and the radiation. She even fought her insurance company to cover the genetic test looking for the BRCA1/BRCA2 marker. They found an anomaly. She was 31 when she lost the battle. She left us to fight the war. She also left us two amazing children and more than one victory. She successfully raised money to find a cure (who can say no to a bald woman actively fighting the battle?) and she refused to hide her illness but rather worked to raise awareness. That genetic test was the baseline needed to conduct tests on my two sisters and me. We did not inherit the gene, therefore our children are also safe from it. The information is there for her children when they are older. All this she handled with dignity and humor. Then she said when she
10-Year Breast Cancer Survivor WI-5001383371
(920) 379-2888 •christiansonc@ﬁrstweber.com
MEMORIALS, Page 12
“When Trudi went to Heaven she took a piece of my soul with her.” AMY MCBRIAR HERRMANN, sister to Trudi McBriar Powers
“A mother herself, she knew the pain of losing her mom and she fought the disease with every fiber of her being to spare her children that pain.” SCOTT MCBRIAR brother to Trudi McBriar Powers
Carleen Christianson REALTOR
Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
BREAST CANCER AWARENESS 11
Affinity knows what it takes to battle and survive breast cancer. They helped me do it twice. Both times I had an entire medical team offering me truly personalized cancer care. Together, we detected the cancer early and began fighting it right away. I gained confidence from my oncologist, peace of mind from my genetic counselor, support from my family practitioner and strength from my physical therapist. The entire team at Mercy Medical Center gave me much more than a fighting chance against cancer. Most importantly, they treated me with more than medicine; they treated me with respect.
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12 BREAST CANCER AWARENESS Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
F]N5/UÑOContinued from Page 10 beat the cancer, she was going to get a pink ribbon tattoo. We lost her six years ago and now we wear the pink ribbon tattoo, in her memory. (Yes, real men really do wear pink!) My sister’s has a butterfly. She says it’s a symbol of the Resurrection and the knowledge we will be together again someday.
Contributed by Scott McBriar
Trudi Jean McBriar Powers
TRUDI JEAN MCBRIAR POWERS
I have heard it said that “Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts and we are never, ever the same.” My sister-in-law Trudi was happily married to her high school sweetheart with two young children when she was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 29. My husband and I were just getting ready to start our family. We both considered them a role model for our young marriage. At the time
of her illness, we were fortunate enough to live next door to Trudi and the family. We spent a lot of time together and became very close. Even though she fought for her life, I know she herself was encouraged when we finally gave her the news that we were pregnant. She went to the doctor with me and asked a million questions. She couldn’t wait to be an Aunt again! The news about her cancer was McFarland not nearly as good. It had spread to Shari SUBMITTED PHOTO her spine and her liver in spite of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. Sadly she died shortly after finding out about our pregnancy. But the support and encouragement that she gave me as a young wife and mother-to-be is a gift that I will always treasure. I think about her every day. That was six years ago and our son just turned five. His little sister is three. They never met their Aunt Trudi, but they know who she is. From left: Bill McFarland (Shari’s They know she watches over them husband), Shari, Jodi Duron, Mike from Heaven. We all have regrets, Duron. SUBMITTED PHOTO but my greatest regret is that my children will never know their Aunt and she will never know them. My mother fought her battle very My sister-in-law Trudi was in my bravely, and then she was a surlife for too short a time, but I will vivor! Then, eight years later she never, ever be same. was told again, “You have breast Contributed by Amanda McBriar cancer, and this time it has spread.” How heart breaking. She was a new grandmother and enjoying her life, SHARI MCFARLAND then this news brought everything My Mom, Shari McFarland, was to a sudden halt. Mom did everygoing about her daily life more thing she could to beat this disease. than eight years earlier when she was first told she had breast cancer. She went through several different chemo treatments, more surgeries, It was right before Christmas, and infections, lymphedema, radiation came as a shock to all of us. We … She would have done anything wondered how it was possible; to be here to watch her grandsons there is no family history of breast grow up. Sadly, on May 18, 2010 cancer. Needless to say, breast canshe lost her battle. We miss her cer can happen in anyone, even if every day. We know she is here with there is no history.
us and watching over us, but would give anything to be able to hug her and tell her how much we love her one more time. One thing I know I learned from watching my Mom go through her battles with breast cancer is to know your body. If you don’t think something is right, get a second opinion, or a third. Early detection is so very important to fight this disease. Do your self checks and get your mammogram … it could save your life and allow you to watch your grandkids grow up. We love you Grandma Angel.
Contributed by Jodi Duron
Shari McFarland was the inspiration for Real Men Wear Pink. Her second battle with breast cancer caused a spark in her son-in-law, Mike Duron, to organize some type of fundraiser to help people who were going through expensive medical treatments and needed some financial assistance. Mike, along with his wife and many friends, organized the first Real Men Wear Pink Softball Tournament in just two months. Shari was so proud of all they accomplished. The initial Real Men Wear Pink Softball Tournament was a great success and it was decided that the tournament would continue annually to benefit other people fighting breast cancer. On May 18, 2010, with her family at her side, Shari was given a reprieve from her pain and lifted up to her eternal resting place in heaven. She is greatly missed and will continue to serve as the ultimate inspiration for the organization’s future efforts.
Contributed by Real Men Wear Pink:
Mike Duron, Jodi Duron, Lisa Curtis, Kathryn Hable, Jennifer Ruetten
In remembering her: She had breast cancer and a lumpectomy 13 years later. She lived to be 95 years old. She was a very strong person. She passed up to heaven July 3, 2011. I still love and miss you Grandma. XXX. Contributed by Lori Hoppe
In loving memory of Sandra who passed away from cancer. Your family all Susanna love you so Pintsch SUBMITTED PHOTO much and will never forget you for as long as we live. May we all meet in heaven and be together some day. You were so loved and are missed so much. Your mother, grandchildren and all your children. Rest in peace, we always love you.
Contributed by Olga Tauschmann
SUSANNA MARIE PINTSCH
In honor of my daughter, Susanna Pintsch, who died in April of 2010. She fought for 6 ½ years with breast cancer. She was 44 years old. Thanks to all who helped her along her journey.
Contributed by Mother, Gladys Meyer
MEMORIALS, Page 14
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Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
BREAST CANCER AWARENESS 13
14 BREAST CANCER AWARENESS Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
F]N5/UÑOContinued from Page 12
When our Mom was hospitalized at Berlin one evening in January 1996 the whole family was surprised as Mom never got sick. She was the one who always took care of everyone else.The next shocking news was that she had breast cancer and her kidneys were starting to shut down. Mom needed emergency kidney stint surgery and was transferred to St. Elizabeth's in Appleton. This was the start of many tests, blood draws, chemo & radiation. We were told Mom had about 3-6 months to live. Through all the pain and treatments Mom would always thank every nurse, nurse's aide, and doctor and never complained no matter how much pain she was in. Instead, Mom prayed — for her family and friends, not for herself and she said it's all in God's plan. Mom always had a cheery word to share and wanted to know how our day went, how the grandkids were etc. before she'd tell us about her day. Mom blessed us with her love, faith, and strength for 18 months before dying in November 1997. We love you and miss you dearly Mom.
Contributed by Gloria Lichtfuss, daughter
MICHELE RAMSEIERSTONE DVM
1/23/1972 - 1/22/2010 Michele hated pink. It just reminded her of something she had that for a moment she tried to forget. Cancer starts as a disease, but soon becomes a lifestyle filled with doctor visits, blood draws, radiation, chemo and surgery. During her 4 1/2 year battle, we took two very memorable trips. As we drove out of our yard to go to
Yellowstone, I mentioned it was nice to get away. Michele's response was, "too bad I had to have cancer for us to take a family vacation" (take home message). She loved being a Mom and vet more than anything. The flower gardens she planted still bloom and the barn quilt that our 4-H club made keeps us all warm with her memory. Michele's battle cry ... live.
Contributed by Rob Stone
Tammy lost her battle with breast cancer on September 14, 2008. She was a young 49. She had first been diagnosed with breast cancer in 2001. She fought and won. She remained in remission for five years. Before finding out that the cancer had returned, Tammy was having terrible Tammy migraines and Rumlow vomiting. She went to the doctor a number of times, being told it was vertigo. Through feeling so terrible she still managed to go to work and maintain an upbeat attitude and laugh. I remember every time she would laugh she would bend over and squeeze her head because the pain was intolerable. After several weeks of this, she went to the hospital. The next day was the day of her Grandmother's funeral. She was not released to attend the funeral, nor was she feeling well enough to attend. I remember going that morning to visit her. She put on a smile, keeping the news a secret until the family had returned from the funeral. She did not want to upset any-
one. After the funeral is when Tammy, with her husband by her side, shared the news. What a shock. She was so young, beautiful, and such a strong person. The cancer had metastasized in her brain, lungs, spine and most everywhere. Through all these times she maintained an upbeat, positive attitude. She underwent many treatments including radiation and cyber knife. Even when she was feeling her sickest, she never took self pity. She was always there to comfort us. Tammy, we are so fortunate to have shared our life with you. You have touched the lives of so many people. You have taught us strength, wisdom, kindness, grace and to always have a positive attitude. Forever in our hearts. We love you!
Contributed by Dana Ruh
CAROL SCHWERSINSKE MCKERN
October 21, 1942 - May 16, 2000 — Carol fought a long five-year battle with breast cancer. She never gave up. The thing that got her down the most was losing her hair, so her sister Judy made up all kinds of hats and scarves for her. The fights with the insurance company would make her cry more than her battle with cancer. She loved her garden and Carol would someSchwersinske times have to McKern crawl out there to work on it. Forever in our hearts.
Contributed by sisters Judith Bauer, Joyce Lippert, Yvonne Featherston
Dear Grandma, Still missing you
every day and thinking of you with all my love and prayers that God will bless you every day and keep you in his care. OXOXOX Love all of us!
Make the most of today, Life passes too fast. In loving memory of Nancy Tod Kuehl; Born 2-5-38; Died 1-8-91. Missed by your family & friends.
EMILY JO SWEENEY
SHIRLEY WOOD RADLOFF
Contributed by Janet Helstrom
Em, we celebrate your genuine spirit and your incredible love for life as you cared for your family. We treasure our time spent with you and we remember your humor that helps to brighten our days! Forever in our hearts. Love your family
Contributed by Menzies/Bolin/Sweeney Family
My grandmother died of breast cancer in 1935 when I was too young to remember her. However, I have heard the story of her last days. My aunt, who still lived with her at the time, said she had to insert radium needles into her mother’s breasts for treatment. The task must have taken a lot of courage on both of their parts. And it must have also been quite a painful ordeal for my grandmother. To the best of my knowledge, none of her three daughters, and none of her three granddaughters had breast cancer. The erroneous family belief at the time is that her cancer was caused by her habit of slicing bread on her bosom while preparing dinner.
Contributed by Len Tews
NANCY TOD KUEHL
Life is too short, Don’t waste a minute. Enjoy each day and everyone in it. Tomorrow will come, It could be your last,
Contributed by Laura Tod
Mom was a wonderful, caring lady who raised eight kids on a farm in rural Oshkosh with our dad, Roger. She love playing Scrabble with her grandchildren and attending their concerts and sporting events. She was a huge advocate of 4-H and the County Fair. Mom lived a full, rich life but at age 67, breast cancer took her away from us. Her mother, our grandmother, Viola Turner Shirley Wood Wood, also had Radloff breast cancer. She beat it and lived to the ripe old age of 98. We are blessed and happy to say our sister Marjie Sitter, is a 12 year survivor of breast cancer. I don’t remember it being easy by any means, but she beat it and today is happy and healthy. Three generations of great ladies affected by breast cancer. Mom and Grandma, we love and miss you so much. Marj, we love you and are so glad you are a breast cancer survivor.
Contributed by Connie Hay
For those dedicated Aurora volunteers who fought the fight bravely and were taken too soon: Dorothy Blavat, Barb Patrie, Mary DeNure and Gail Pennau.
Nancy Tod Kuehl
Contributed by John Nieman
Sunday, October 2, 2011 » Oshkosh Northwestern
BREAST CANCER AWARENESS 15
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