ST. LOUIS (KPLR) – By December 2016, more than 240,000 women in America will learn that they have breast cancer. The diagnosis will change their lives forever. But the American Cancer Society is there to inspire hope.
Celebrate and support – that's what happens at the annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk. Survivor Ronda Salazar will be there this weekend for the walk.
Salazar, a business analyst, got her diagnosis a little over 18 months ago while on a lunch break from the office.
“There was a pink mammogram van sitting on the corner right outside my building,” she said. “And that triggered the thought in me that I probably need to get this taken care of.”
Salazar, who was 46 at the time, had never had a breast cancer screening. She blames procrastination.
“A few days later, I got a letter saying that they needed to do some additional tests,” she said. “Several x-rays, ultra sounds, and three biopsies later, I got that call that told me I had breast cancer.”
Salazar contacted the American Cancer Society for help. That first phone call lasted more than an hour.
“She gave me a lot of information and details on studies and things of that nature,” she said. “A lot of statistics that helped me feel better about my own, diagnosis and gave me hope that I was going to be able to beat this.”
Salazar elected to have a double mastectomy to avoid problems down the road.
“When I had my surgery, it was then that they found out it was actually stage one by that time, which means it had started to spread a little bit,” she said.
Salazar now talks to others about the importance of screenings and mammograms. She’s an active participant in the annual breast cancer walk.
Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk
Saturday, October 22
Lower Muny parking lot in Forest Park
Registration at 7:30 a.m.; walk begins at 9 a.m.