Tulsa Sisters Who Survived Breast Cancer Understand The Risk

Friday, September 4th 2015, 10:07 am
By: LeAnne Taylor

When a woman has a close female relative with breast cancer, she has twice the risk for breast cancer than a woman without a family history.  If she has more than one close female relative with a history of breast cancer, her risk is about three to four times higher.  

I have a story of two sisters who understand that risk and both are ready to Race For The Cure.

Peggy Griggs and her sister Linda are survivors. They've both battled breast cancer. For Peggy, twice!

"She came back and asked we need to do that over again and I thought oh no... and so we did it over again and then she was looking at it and she said I'm going to have the doctor look at this... and I thought, it's back," said Peggy Griggs.  

Both women understand this disease since their mom and aunt both have had it. But it was still hard to accept when they were diagnosed.

"I think for some reason since I was getting my yearly mammogram hey this is going to prevent it from happening. I don't know why but I felt so secure knowing that I was doing what I needed to do," said Peggy Griggs.

Looking at Linda's calendar you can see her journey through breast cancer, from the mammogram date, to diagnosis to surgery, it's all listed here.

"You're in shock and you go home and cry for awhile and then your like ok, I can do this and talking with other women we can do this, I can do this," said Linda Gasperich.

"I think I was on automatic pilot.  Yes I think you are. You have people making suggestions and saying this is probably what you need to do and ok, well let's do it," said Peggy Griggs.  

Surgeries, chemotherapy and radiation was all part of the treatment plan and a whole lot of faith.

"I truly believe God has been with me all the way and give him praise for all that and during this time," said Peggy Griggs.

"Our mother, our father and our brother died while we were going through this and that's hard," said Linda Gasperich.  

And for Linda, she had a little extra incentive.

"I have a grandson. He was born not long after I started chemo and everything and that just raised the bar and I said, ok. I've got to live for him," said Linda Gasperich. 

Each year, these sisters have joined thousands of others in the Komen Race for the Cure. They walk for their mom, their aunt, their friends and for one another.

"To me it's still humbling to see all those ladies with those pink shirts.  A lot of them have been survivors for year and years and that's encouraging isn't it, it is," said Peggy Griggs. 

You can join these sisters and thousands of others who will gather at ONEOK Field, Saturday September 26th for the 19th annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. 

Registration is open right up to race morning, go to my page on NewsOn6.com to form your own team or join mine.