Susan G. Komen Foundation Of Chattanooga Launches This Year's Race For The Cure

Thursday, June 26, 2014 - by Hollie Webb
- photo by Hollie Webb

The Susan G. Komen Foundation of Chattanooga launched this year's Race for the Cure with stories from a group called the "Fab 15,"  made up of 15 local breast cancer survivors.

Darlene Smith spoke first, saying she was first diagnosed in January 2003. She said doctors told her the cancer was late stage, and the prognosis was not good. 

She said, "Komen came into my life in a time I when really needed it." The organization not only allowed her to meet other people facing similar diagnoses, but also on a national level funded the research that eventually helped create the drug that saved her life.

Ms. Smith said, "When a person experiences a cancer diagnosis, it affects not only that person but everyone that loves them...Now that I'm on the other side, I try to use that experience to give back to other people." 

She also pointed out, "The race means so much to so many people...75 percent of every dollar stays in our local community."

Debbie Fassino was diagnosed in November 2012 with infiltrating ductal breast cancer. 

She said, "I actually had found it myself in a self exam, and my doctor had missed it in two biopsies." By that time, it was a stage IIIb.

For six months, Ms. Fassino underwent grueling chemotherapy and radiation treatments. She said the support of family, friends, and community was what got her through the lowest points, calling it "incredibly powerful." 

Ms. Fassino encouraged others to listen to their "little voice" if they ever feel something is wrong. She said while at first, she feared her doctor would think she was a "hypochondriac," her intuition persisted.

She said, "I really talk about listening to that little voice. Don't shut it up because it's talking for a reason, and it saved my life." 

Tina Kim also found her own cancer. She said it came as a shock because she had no family history and lead a very healthy lifestyle. She was also the mother of two young children at the time.

However, from the very first, she said she decided to look at it as just another chapter of her life she would have to face, emphasizing the importance of keeping a positive mental state. 

She said, "What will be will be. If my life is going to end today, nothing can change that."

Ms. Kim said she wanted to tell anyone facing a similar situation not to be scared, but to "be happy until the last minute and don't give up." 

She said, "Life is up and down." She said if you are happy but see someone else going through a difficult time, "be aware."

She continued, "When you're turn comes, accept it and go through it...God gives everybody opportunities but it depends on how you take it. Don't give up, keep going."

- Photo2 by Ho

Dalton Police Department Celebrates Brad Jones’ Retirement

The Dalton Police Department said goodbye to one of its own Friday as longtime employee Brad Jones celebrated his retirement from the agency. Mr. Jones served the department as a civilian employee. He joined the DPD in 1988 as a dispatcher.  Mr. Jones served as a dispatcher until 1994 when he moved into the property and evidence room as a P&E custodian.  He retired ... (click for more)

Heritage House Craft And Crop Set For Nov. 6

The Heritage House Craft and Crop will be held on Thursday, Nov. 6, from 6-9 p.m. at Heritage House Arts and Civic Center, 1428 Jenkins Road. This is part of the monthly Ambi Artist Meeting.  Participants can come, whether designing clothes or costumes, painting a portrait, scrapbooking, crocheting, making jewelry, or whatever the craft of choice.   ... (click for more)

Mayor Berke, Chattanooga Police Department, And Community Members Reach Out To Group Members To End Violence

The city of Chattanooga held a call-in on Thursday night, as part of the Violence Reduction Initiative. Dozens of law enforcement officials, community members, social service providers and clergy gathered to deliver a message to over 20 members of violent groups in Chattanooga. Family members of the probationers watched the call-in from another building. Although the call-in was ... (click for more)

Tribute Service For Luther Masingill Held At Historic Engel Stadium

It took a place as big as historic Engel Stadium for Chattanooga to say goodbye to their beloved Luther. Hundreds came Thursday afternoon to pay tribute to Luther Masingill who died early Monday morning after a radio career that spanned an amazing 74 years. It was clear from all who spoke that he was considered not only a radio personality, but also a role model. One after ... (click for more)

Not Everything Has Been Done To Save Hutcheson

I am a resident of Walker County and I have a personal belief that a hospital ranks equal to other basic services a community should offer (like police, fire, emergency services, school systems, government, etc.). I am not privy to all the management and financial conundrums concerning the feasibility of maintaining and growing Hutcheson, and as a private citizen I don’t believe ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Pete Carroll’s Philosophy

Pete Carroll, the head football coach of the Seattle Seahawks, has a deep belief that he can change people by simply listening to them and then making suggestions on how they can get what they really want. If the people Carroll who can influence win, Carroll wins, and remember his team won last year’s Super Bowl with his methods.   When asked for example, here is what ... (click for more)