"At first, it was a good cause. If I can help out, great, but now it hits home," Bart said.
Bart posed for a firefighter calendar to benefit the charity SHOUT, which helps cancer patients. Now, that calendar will help his wife who was recently diagnosed with cancer.
Amy Watkins said money raised from the calendar will pay for massages for women undergoing chemotherapy. The massages helped lower her chemo side effects.
By Kirsten McIntyre, NEWS 9
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Posing for a calendar started as a way to benefit a local charity that is raising money for women battling cancer. But now one Oklahoma City firefighter's goodwill is helping his wife.
When Bart Pappe recently posed for an upcoming calendar, he had no idea he would actually end up helping his wife.
It's been almost two months since Bart found himself facing the unthinkable. He found his wife not breathing. As a firefighter, he's trained to save lives, but this time was different.
"I couldn't believe I was having to do this on my wife," Bart said. "Gave her probably a good 10 breaths and finally, she started breathing."
Minta Pappe was rushed to the hospital where she was diagnosed with a rare tumor in her lower trachea.
Suddenly, the Pappe's and their four children were dealing with cancer.
"We were living the dream and I went down 30 seconds and found out now I have cancer," Minta Pappe said.
Just a week before, Bart had posed for a calendar featuring Oklahoma City firefighters-- a different firefighter every month. The calendar is a fundraiser for a local cancer support group called SHOUT.
"Very few people understand what it feels like to be told you have cancer," Amy Watkins said.
Watkins is still battling her cancer. She said money raised from the calendar will pay for massages for women undergoing chemotherapy.
"My side effects lasted, instead of seven days, lasted three days instead," Watkins said.
Minta will soon need those massages. She's starting chemotherapy in the coming weeks.
"At first, it was a good cause. If I can help out, great, but now it hits home," Bart said. "Just buy a calendar."
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