CHRISTUS breast cancer patients come together for support - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

CHRISTUS breast cancer patients come together for support

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The fight is on to beat cancer.

Oct. 1 marks the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
It's a disease that almost all of us have come in contact with at some point in our lives, whether through the experience of a family member, a friend, or ourselves. 

With each move of the hand and kind word to a friend, the women that are part of the CHRISTUS Health breast cancer support group are on their way to beating cancer. 

Each one is at a very different place on their path, but they are all walking the same road together.

Once a week the women meet to hear from motivational speakers and spend time with someone else who knows.

Brenda Pierce is one of those. She beat cancer into remission 26 years ago. 

"The lord works in mysterious ways. Who would have ever thought that breast cancer would qualify me for a job?" said Pierce.

She now gives back to her sisters by working as a nurse navigator for CHRISTUS.
Her job is to help women through treatments from beginning to end. 

"I have some that call me on the weekends. I give them my cell phone. Sometimes you just need to talk to somebody that's walked in your shoes or been in your bra so to speak. Sometimes you just need to talk to somebody that knows what you're going through," said Pierce.

One of the newest patients in the support group, Charlene Staystork, got her diagnosis just two months ago after finding a lump in her own breast. 

"I had a benign mass two years earlier, so I just assumed it was the same thing. At the biopsy my doctor found it was different," said Staystork.

Charlene had her breasts removed and the next step is to undergo chemo and radiation. 

She and Brenda are asking all women to check their own breasts, no matter their age, and to get their annual physicals.

"Early detection is key. If you can find it early, you too will be here 25 years later just like me," said Pierce.

CHRISTUS Health is going pink with the 19th Annual Race for the Cure on Nov. 2.
This year the race kicks off at Mall St. Vincent and runs through South Highland.


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