John and Sally Ward have been named Honorary Chair and Honorary Survivor Chair, for the 11th Annual Komen Brainerd Lakes Race for the Cure, June 26 at Forestview Middle School in Baxter.
Both are being honored by the Brainerd Lakes Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure as great examples of spirit and hope for many other breast cancer survivors and their commitment to the Komen mission of finding a cure for breast cancer. Sally’s Team Hope has been one of the strongest teams at the Race over the past six years.
A teacher in the Brainerd area, Sally was diagnosed with breast cancer June 6, 2003, three months after she had a clean mammogram.
"I was a lucky one," Sally said. "It may have been luck, but I prefer to think that I was blessed! I was also blessed with great support from family and friends.
“I support the Race because I am a firm believer in early detection,” she continued.
Sally’s husband, John, recently retired from teaching to serve as a representative in the Minnesota State Legislature.
“After the initial shock and my feelings of fear, alarm and anger, Sally went into fight-and-conquer mode,” John said. “Sal had a huge level of support and love from family and friends. She became an 'expert' on breast cancer and treatments as she used every piece of knowledge she could gather to come up with the right choice of treatment for her.
The 11th Annual Susan G. Komen Brainerd Lakes Race for the Cure is scheduled for June 26 at Forestview Middle School in Baxter. Last year's event attracted 2,400 participants.