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Cancer survivors honored by community (video)

By chirst
Oct. 12, 2012 at 5:12 a.m.
Updated Oct. 13, 2012 at 5:13 a.m.

Holly Birmingham, left, Evelyn Thompson, center, and Debbie Breeden, right, celebrate being cancer survivors at the Tickled Pink Fun Day on Friday by releasing doves at the ceremony. The women were among 10 selected from the Crossroads area for the honor.

Ten Crossroads women, most of them strangers, spent all day Friday together in the lap of luxury.

Though their professions, ages and backgrounds differed, the women climbed out from the back of the limousine at DeLeon Plaza with at least one thing in common - they are all cancer survivors.

"It has been nice because we do understand. It has been fun because there is a camaraderie there," Evelyn Thompson, a breast cancer survivor, said about Tickled Pink Fun Day on Friday. "It is nice getting to know them; it is a special day."

Lisa Kristynik, a branch manager for First Victoria, helped plan the event to raise money for the Guardians of the Ribbon, South Texas Chapter.

Co-sponsored by Touch of Class Limousine, Kristynik said Tickled Pink raised about $10,000 this year for the Guardians of the Ribbon, an organization that keeps all of the money raised in the Crossroads to help local cancer patients.

In addition to raising money, however, Kristynik said they wanted to take the opportunity to honor cancer survivors and those battling cancer.

Women who had or have cancer were nominated by the community and then chosen by a committee for the day of pampering, Kristynik said.

The women were picked up by a limousine at 8 a.m. Friday and taken to Hair Dimensions for a free hair and makeup makeover. Next, they headed to DeLeon Plaza for a ceremony, including a dove release and to sign the Pink Fire Truck of the Guardians of the Ribbon.

After the ceremony, the women went to Sky Restaurant for lunch and then to The Nail Spa for free manicures and pedicures.

"It means the world to me because it shows support and that is what every person with cancer needs - the support of family and friends. That is what you need for healing," Thompson said.

Bobbie Rodella, of Victoria, attended the ceremony to watch her daughter sing in the Nazareth Academy Choir, which performed at the dove release. Rodella, who has lost family members to cancer, said it is important for her daughter to understand and support the battle against cancer.

"It is a daily fight, and I want her to know what is going on; even in third grade, it's not too soon," Rodella said.

Annie Frysak, a breast cancer survivor, was diagnosed with leukemia in June. She was honored in the ceremony and said being around other cancer survivors helped her in her current battle against cancer.

"It makes me feel better being around other people that understand," Frysak said.



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