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Pink event urges cancer awareness

“Awareness is the first step in the fight against breast cancer”could be read on the back of pink T-shirts at the Think Pink eventsponsored by the King’s Daughters Medical Foundation on Tuesday atthe First United Methodist Church Ministry Center.

Awareness was the key message during the morning’s activities asan expert panel of doctors and a Pink Sister encouraged those inattendance to get tested for breast cancer. They urged startingtesting as early as 35 and to continue yearly follow-upexaminations.

Pink Sister Jennifer Jackson said one key to her positiveoutcome in her fight with breast cancer was due to an earlymammogram.

“Early detection is key,” Jackson said. “It’s why thesemammograms are so important.”

However, examinations do not always include doctor visits.

According to panel member Dr. LeDon Langston, 50 percent ofabnormalities are made by self-discovery. He also mentioned peopleneed to know the proper way to examine one’s body.

“Get to know your breasts,” he said.

Langston recommended self-examination at the beginning of eachmonth, which includes standing naked in front of the mirror withthe arm in several positions to learn about the body and to detectany possible problems.

In addition to expert advice and opinions, door prizes and boxedlunches, breast cancer survivor and television and radiopersonality Paul Ott Carruth highlighted the awareness event.

Carruth introduced a video of his daughter, Carla Tigner,sharing her battle and survival with breast cancer at a previousThink Pink event. Tigner was unable to attend this year’sevent.

The father and daughter shared an interesting story that broughtsome spectators to tears.

Tigner was diagnosed with breast cancer 21 years after hermother, Alberta Carruth, died from ovarian cancer. Tigner’s father,after feeling a suspicious lump while on his radio and televisionshow, “Listen to the Eagle,” was diagnosed with breast cancer justtwo years after his daughter’s discovery.

The story of the trio’s struggle with various forms of cancercontained the theme of support and awareness to handle a medicalcondition that will affect half of all men and one third of allwomen in the United States, according to the American CancerSociety.

In her video, Tigner encouraged fellow cancer survivors toimpact the lives of those they come in contact with.

“Each of you have a story to tell and you may inspire them,”Tigner said. “Tell your story as often as you can.”

During the question-and-answer session with the expert panel,Carruth made a joke that made the audience laugh during a serioustime.

“If you don’t laugh about some of these things, you’ll cry,” headded.