Avore advocates for Metastatic Breast Cancer


By Meladi Brewer


GREENVILLE — The Darke County Board of Commissioners declared Oct. 13 as National Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day.

Breast Cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in the world, and the second leading cause of death among women in the United States. More than one in eight women and one in 833 men in the U.S. will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

“I have learned more about this subject than I would have liked to know personally,” Asst. Clerk/Secretary Karen Avore said. “I do want to say Darke County is very lucky to have the cancer center and the surgeons, doctors, and nurses.”

Avore advocated about the benefits the facility and staff have been to her through her own journey having been diagnosed with breast cancer seven years ago. At the beginning of her journey, she questioned her life expectancy as many do asking if she was going to die.

“When I was first diagnosed with the c-word. I was visiting with the doctor and Jill came in with your kind compassion, and I asked ‘am I going to die?’ and you looked at me and said “oh no, dear’. That was exactly what I needed at that time. It set me into warrior mode,” Avore said.

Avore knew in the beginning she was going to be a fighter. She had surgery and advised the next day she attended her daughter’s soccer game just because she knew other girls were watching her.

“One of them could have breast cancer and maybe they will look back and say ‘hey, her mom had it and look at her.’ I am thankful, as Darke County is very blessed for their facilities that are here,” Avore said.

Metastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) occurs when breast cancer spreads to other parts of the body, including bones, lungs, liver, and brain. Treatment for advanced breast cancer can often shrink the cancer or slow its growth, but after a time, it tends to stop working. Avore said after seven years, she was diagnosed with cancer in her lungs, bones, and lymph nodes.

“It had metastasized. In January, I was told I had two to three months to live, and my doctor, who is very kind, looked at me and said I was kind of spunky, so I want you to try some things. So what I’m doing now is working well,” Avore said.

After receiving hard news, Avore began to fight by turning on her warrior mode once more. She said she likes to say she is just like everyone else because no one truly knows how much time they have, and every day is a blessing.

The ribbon in support of Metastatic Breast Cancer is an array of three colors: pink, green, and teal. The teal color portrays healing and spirituality, green represents the triumph of spring over winter, life over death, renewal, hope, and immortality, and lastly, the pink overlay signifies that the cancer originated in the breast.

Avore said she did not want to go through this journey for no reason, so she has begun a journey of advocating and spreading awareness to children and adults alike.

“Someday when I’m gone, I hope they can say, she had cancer, but she always had a smile,” Avore said.

To learn more about the Cancer Association of Darke County, Breast cancer, or to make a donation towards research, visit their website at cadcinfo.org.

To contact Daily Advocate Reporter Meladi Brewer, email [email protected].

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