3 Day for the Cure...3 days...60 miles...
If you are reading Melissa's blog for the first time, you are probably from Atlanta...or you walked in Atlanta, OR you cheered us on in Atlanta.
I am Melissa's mom, and have been updating her blog for the last 2 1/2 years.
Her last post was Christmas 2008, about a week before she passed away.
She (and her husband) lived in Cincinnati, I live in Dayton.
Why the Atlanta walk? In 2007 (Just a year before she passed away) She had a friend from college who was doing the walk in Atlanta with her sister (Julie, who happens to be on our team this year). She wanted Melissa to do it too. So Melissa, in her 4th year of fighting breast cancer, decided to do it with them.
It was not a difficult decision for her, since she was fighting this terrible
disease and was hoping to beat it once and for all. This was a good way to
support the cause. Her attitude was B POSITIVE (it's not just my blood type).
She was a rugby player. A competitor. And she was NOT going to lose this battle.
She could not afford to fly to Atlanta (pretty overwhelmed with medical bills at the time), so I offered to drive her to Atlanta, stay in a hotel, cheer her on, and
bring her home.
A week before the walk, the Cincinnati Kelts Rugby Club held a Breast Cancer Fundraiser, with proceeds going to Susan G. Komen. She called me the Monday before the walk..."MOM! The rugby team raised enough money...you can do the walk WITH me!"
My response? "Melissa...I can't walk 60 miles this weekend!!!!"
"Mom. I'm on chemo. If I can do it, you can do it."
So we did.
It was the most INCREDIBLE weekend of my life.
The following Christmas, she gave me a scrapbook that she made of our walk. (You can see those pictures if you scroll down this page, there is a link on the right).
In 2009, I did the walk in Atlanta AGAIN, this time WITHOUT her. I was honored to carry the flag "MY DAUGHTER" in the opening and closing ceremonies.
And now, in 2011, I am doing the walk again, this time with a team of nine. We are TEAM B POSITIVE.
You probably recieved a card from one of us...a couple of us were wearing FORT shirts. (Melissa got the nickname FORT~from her last name~ from her best friend in high school, who happens to be walking this year and is my tentmate). It stuck.
I don't think many people she went to college with even KNEW her first name was Melissa.
I will be honored AGAIN to carry the flag, MY DAUGHTER, in the opening and closing ceremonies.
My updates for the last couple of years are about Melissa. But you want to read
HER writing. To read from the beginning, go to www.fortscancersux1.blogspot.com.
She was diagnosed in 2003. She started the blog when she had her first reoccurence and was back on chemo. She had mouth sores and didn't want to talk on the phone (or talk much period), so she started the blog to keep her friends and family updated.
It is the story of HER journey. She will make you laugh a lot. SHe was a fantastic writer...and I am SO glad she left her story.
To read her most recent (last) posts, scroll down this page to the archives. Anything before 2009 was posted by Fort. She was amazing.
I hope you are encouraged by her journey. I was. And I will not give up this fight until there is a cure.
Thank you for reading, and thank you for cheering us on and supporting us in our 3 day, 60 mile journey!