Photo: Eclipse Sportswire
A Guest Blog by Jarrod Harrok
When my mother was first diagnosed with breast cancer, I was a teenager and too immature to understand the gravity of her condition. When her cancer returned five years later, it was a shock to the system.
My mom was always a healthy person, so the first diagnosis came out of left field. Surgery and radiation were the preferred methods of treatment. She got healthy again and life was normal for the next five years.
Her regular doctor visits continued and a small tumor showed up on a routine X-ray. In addition to her cancer returning, my grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. My mom was not initially worried about herself, but more concerned that I would be left alone without a family. Following a brief moment of weakness, she was ready to resume the battle.
Stage 4 breast cancer meant the scary possibility of lung removal, but that option was swept under the rug. Tamoxifen was the prescription of choice, and she fought the good fight with a healthy lifestyle and positive attitude, beating long odds and remaining cancer-free for the last 19 years.
My mom introduced me to horse racing at a young age and I am proud to be a part of this wonderful industry, thanks to her. She told me a few months ago that she was coming to Louisville for her birthday on May 1 and wanted to attend the 2014 Kentucky Derby.
The other day, I read the Churchill press release about the 2014 Survivors Parade. I knew this was my chance to pay it forward. I nominated my mom.
On Kentucky Oaks Day, 140 cancer survivors will be invited to participate in the Survivors Parade.
If you would like my mom to be part of the parade, and I hope you do, I ask you to please visit her profile page, and help this dream become a reality - http://survivors.kentuckyderby.com/survivors/1159. You can vote once a day for Angela Cambouris through March 31. The top 140 vote-getters will be announced on April 1. Thank You!