Single Tulsa Mom, Breast Cancer Survivor Stresses Importance Of Early Detection

Thursday, September 10th 2015, 9:13 am
By: LeAnne Taylor

Lots of people think breast cancer is a disease primarily in older women, while age does play a role, breast cancer also affects young women.

I want you to meet a local woman diagnosed at the age of 29.  

This is a typical day for single mom Ryan Summer Wooten. Six-year-old Chase and three-year-old Haily are full of energy.

Ryan Summer and her kids moved back to Tulsa in 2013 to be close to family when one day while showering she found a breast lump. So she went immediately to see her doctor, saying that something wasn't right.

"And so I told the doctor that and we went back and forth but they're like you're 29 years old, you know you're healthy and I said well, this is not normal for me so she referred me to a breast surgeon. They did a biopsy of the swollen lymph node and the next day I was diagnosed with breast cancer," said Ryan Summer.

"Like you just never forget that second and I just like said ok... so immediately that day, as a matter of fact my Bible is right over there behind you. The first thing I did, I went to the Christian bookstore and I bought a Bible. I wrote down the date and it was like the day your life changed. I just gave it to God and said OK... whatever this is, I'm going to get through it because my daughter was 1 year old and my son was 4 and I wanted her to know her mom."

The tumor was large and aggressive so she first started chemotherapy to shrink the tumor. 

Within two weeks she started losing her hair but she knew it was a small price to pay for her healing. After six rounds, the tumor was gone. She then had surgery and radiation and now is cancer free.

But Ryan Summer shares her story in hopes of encouraging other women, especially minorities, about the importance of early detection.

"I really pray and hope that I get the words and impression to be able to communicate in my community amongst African American women like myself, just how important it is. Being a survivor is a blessing," said Ryan Summer.

You can help in the fight against breast cancer.  You can donate to the cause, you can volunteer or you can join my team. Go to for more information about the race that's coming up Saturday, September 26, 2015 at Tulsa's ONEOK Field.