Stephanie's mom and brother

Stephanie’s mom and brother

I went 34 years without being touched by cancer.

I did have an aunt who passed away from breast cancer, but we weren’t that close so it didn’t really impact me. My brother had encountered melanoma cancer, but he survived it. To me, that didn’t used to count.

I knew it existed and that it was a blind hunter that took who it wanted when it wanted, no matter the type.

It wasn’t until after my 34th birthday that it finally hit home for me.

My mom was diagnosed with cancer on June 2, 2015. Just five weeks later she was gone. She lost her fight on the way to the oncologist’s office in Las Vegas, and we never did know where the cancer had started. It was just everywhere within her. I now regret not having an autopsy done at the time, as that might have given me more answers.

Since then, as I have moved through the grieving process, it seems like it is all I see. Cancer is everywhere, regardless of lifestyle or choices a person makes.

Because of that, we need to find a cure for our future generations. We need the research done to be able to prepare and head off the beast that has hurt so many of us. The best way to do that is through the Relay for Life events held each year at the Virgin Valley High School track.

I will be walking this year to honor my mother and others who have passed too soon. But, I will also be walking for my brother, myself and my daughter, Cassidy. I do this more for her than me, as she has many more years ahead of her than I do, and perhaps they can find a cure in her lifetime.

Please join me in raising money for the research so that someday, we can all say that we came together to fund the cure, and keep our loved ones with us for many more years than before.