Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Story - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Story

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The world's largest fund raising and education event for breast cancer is Saturday, June 14, 2014, at 8 AM at the iWireless Center in Moline, IL. This is the 25th year the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure® will be held in the Quad Cities Area.

Thousands of people are expected to attend, including women who are fighting breast cancer, people who want to show support, and survivors, like Deb Smiddy of Hillsdale, IL. She says community events like these helped her get through one of the most challenging times of her life.

"I just decided that it wasn't going to beat me," she said.

In summer 2012, Deb noticed a lump. Soon, she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

"It's terrifying," she said. "All you think of is your babies and your family."

Her husband, Illinois State Rep. Mike Smiddy, was running for office at the time.

"My first thoughts were to back out, to make sure that we could take care of her, and do everything we needed to do for her," he said.

However, he didn't quit.

"She wouldn't let me," he said.

They then went on a journey together. While Deb endured surgeries and treatments, Rep. Smiddy, and several others, supported her.

"My doctors, they are amazing people," Deb said. "I want to give somebody that same strength."

One year later, she was cancer free.

"Pretty awesome," she said.

She is a survivor, who is now giving back by talking to others going through the same thing. She says events like Race for the Cure® provide a platform to do so.

"That incredible passion and strength that women put off join together and fight together," she said.

Rep. Smiddy has also become an advocate for breast cancer survival, with plans to draft legislation that would allow the diagnosed but uninsured to get treated. He and Deb will be meeting with the American Cancer Society this summer.

"Along with some other organizations, to make sure that we have everything in there that we want to see, and bring it to the floor in the fall," he said.

Until then, Team Smiddy is ready to race for the cure on Saturday.

"It's going to be really fun," Deb said.

The Race for the Cure® welcomes runners and walkers alike. This year, registration must be before race day, but the deadline has been extended to Friday at 7 PM. Registration packets are available on Friday as well.

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