(WMC) – A Mid-South breast cancer survivor celebrates being cancer free and credits American Cancer Society for helping her through her diagnosis.
Breast cancer survivor Jacquelyn Hampton was officially cancer free for thirteen years in August.
"August 13, my 13th year as a ... Cancer survivor, and I am thriving," she said smiling from ear to ear.
Hampton said she's as happy and as strong as she can be, but 13 years ago her life was truly devastated when she heard the diagnosis.
She's thankful to be alive and able to share in the 14th annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kickoff walk hosted by the American Cancer Society. She joined WMC Action News 5's very own breast cancer survivor and mistress of ceremony Pam Mckelvy along with hundreds of other women.
"An event like this is so powerful," she said.
Hampton discovered the tumor herself 13 years ago. She says it was very scary at first.
"But you know through the years and talking to other women and letting them know that it's a disease that can be deadly, but God chose to let me live to testify about it," she said.
Hampton didn't know anything about cancer when she was diagnosed, but she said thanks to he American Cancer Society helping her through she can tell her story to other women. Lack of knowledge was one of her toughest hurdles.
"If you explain to people concerning the issue [of] the unknown and make it known to them. Knowledge is the key," she said.
She urges women to have breasts exams and to have hope.
"Because you live each day one day at a time, one day at a time, and if you live one day at a time it will be alright," she said.
The American Cancer Society invests more in cancer research than any other organization.
"This year alone we are investing $84 million to help fight breast cancer," said American Cancer Society spokesperson Sarah Bynum.
They provide screening and educational opportunities as well as prevention tools and different treatment options. Three hundred Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks are held across the country each year.
"Every year we celebrate our cancer survivors and honor those who've been lost to cancer and the Making Strides walk continues to grow throughout the country," she explained.
When women are newly diagnosed with breast cancer the organization provides someone who has actually gone through their cancer journey.
"They can guide the newly diagnosed women along their cancer journey," said Bynum. "So there's no reason people can't get to the treatment and get the screenings that they need. We provide all sorts of free resources for them."
If you'd like to get involved with this event or to learn more about the fight about breast cancer you can log onto their website at www.MakingStridesWalk.org.