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Breast cancer survivors will share their stories at SurvivorFEST

By Jennifer Kendall, jkendall@ktxs.com
Published On: Dec 24 2013 10:16:55 AM CST
Updated On: Oct 15 2013 08:47:43 AM CDT
ABILENE, Texas -

October: For some it means pumpkins, witches and ghosts, but for breast cancer survivors like Becky Childress, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and that means pink.

"I have a lot of pink," Childress said.

According to the American Cancer Society, one in eight women in the U.S. will develop invasive breast cancer during their lifetime.

Five years ago Childress found a lump on her breast.

"The surgeon called me and said it’s cancer. I never ever thought I would hear that word connected with my name," she said.

"I just thought okay I'm going to have to do everything I can to fight," she added.

Childress had a mastectomy and underwent several rounds of chemo.

"I'm a hairdresser so losing my hair, you know, was one of the hardest things for me," Childress said.

Childress said her family gave her the strength she needed to keep going. Then came the day her doctor told her she was finally cancer-free. 

"It's like you have this big dark rain cloud over your head and you're waiting for it to go away and that day I thought, ‘it's gone, that cloud for now is gone,’" Childress said.

Now life is back to normal. Childress is a five-year survivor and said she’s grateful for every day she gets to spend with those she loves the most--her three children and five grandchildren.

"I won’t ever let it get me down," Childress said. "I have too much to live for now."

Breast cancer survivors can take part in SurvivorFEST Saturday, October 19 from 8 p.m. to midnight at the VFW on Veterans Drive. Tickets are $15. The event originated as a way to raise awareness about breast cancer and celebrate survivors.