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updated: 10/9/2012 10:39 AM

Katherine Burgess, Hoffman Estates: 'I want breast cancer to be eradicated'

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Katherine Burgess

I walk because I want breast cancer to be eradicated in my lifetime.

In September 2007, I retired after 34 years of teaching and was looking forward to the rest of life. I had a rude awakening when I went to the doctor for my annual mammogram. I couldn't believe I had been diagnosed with cancer. I religiously had my annual mammograms and did breast self-examinations. How could I have cancer? But that goes to show you it can happen to anyone.

Several relatives and two of my sisters were diagnosed with breast cancer. I want a cure found for this dreaded disease. I've seen too many families torn apart and too many close friends and family members die from cancer.

Making Strides is a constructive way for me to give back to the American Cancer Society that supported me so much with a free wig, a Reach to Recovery mentor and free makeup with the Look Good, Feel Better program.

I was blessed to have insurance to pay for my treatments, but there are many Americans that don't have health insurance.

We need to continue to support ACS, which provides these free programs. These programs always should be available for those diagnosed now and in the future.

The American Cancer Society's involvement in research is also very important. I personally benefitted from one of the drugs discovered through research by one of the scientists supported by ACS.

Let's join together to work and fight to end this disease. It takes a village to raise one child, but I say it takes a village and whole lot more to fight this disease.

Walking in: Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Northwest Suburban

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