BY CINDY TOOPES Courier Staff Writer
---- — OTTUMWA — If you’re a cancer survivor, you will want to join in the exercise, fun and camaraderie that will attract hundreds of people May 11 to Ottumwa Park.
The Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure will start at 8 a.m. that Saturday. Activities will include a one-mile Family Run/Walk, Co-Ed 5K Run/Walk and Kids’ Fun Run.
Jim Streeby is this year’s honorary chair, and Laura Salter is the honorary survivor.
Salter said it’s a real honor to be chosen.
“I don’t know who did the choosing, but they approached me to do it,” Salter said. “Along with that, not a lot is asked of the honorary survivor. The way you’ve handled the diagnosis inspires others, and this is part of it.”
Salter said she spoke at the Survivor Luncheon and, along with being nominated, the coordinators bought her a plane ticket so she could fly to Washington, D.C., for the global race, which will be on the same day as the Ottumwa Race for the Cure.
“Sometimes I think, how did all this happen? Salter said. “It’s incredible what people do in their spare time and want nothing for it.”
Salter also noted she was diagosed with Stage 2 triple negative breast cancers. She’s now two years past the discovery. The surgeon, the oncologist, friends and family advised her to “go with a lumpectomy plus radiation treatments.” She was in trestment for nine months and finished Feb. 23, 2012.
“I’ve decided I’m going to be happy and something good will happen,” Salter said. “And I want to stress how important it is to know your body and check yourself regularly. I found the lump when I was between mammograms.”
Cancer can go that fast, according to Salter. Women can go from feeling nothing to finding something.
“I found something the size of a quarter and hard as a rock. I never felt anything like that,” Salter said.
Laurie Hornback of Hedrick is the race’s chair, and she hopes women will be aware and conscious of their bodies.
“We want women to be preventative and pro-active,” she said.
For more information about the race, call 641-684-2556 and leave your name and number.