The Paper photo by Tabitha Blaisdell 
(Left to right) Co-chair of events Karen Monts, Community Manager of Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Lauren Nikides and survivor Kim Coons shared the event’s success and spirit.
The Paper photo by Tabitha Blaisdell
(Left to right) Co-chair of events Karen Monts, Community Manager of Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Lauren Nikides and survivor Kim Coons shared the event’s success and spirit.

On Monday night at 6 p.m., Hair Express opened their hearts and salon doors to hold their very first Pamper Party for Breast Cancer Survivors.  The event, which was coordinated by owner Debi Cassida of Hair Express, featured many activities such as massages, manicures, goodie giveaways and an abundance of tasty treats to give the ladies a relaxing night to remember. 

The event was sure to raise the spirits of all in attendance. Laughter could be heard from the moment you stepped foot into Hair Express until the moment you left. Survivors, friends and family of the survivors, activists, and many women alike were united at this event to share their survival stories or how breast cancer has affected their lives as witnesses to their friends’ and family who have battled the disease.

A 13-year breast cancer survivor, Pat Kennedy, talked about how breast cancer not only affected her, but how her daughter is an 8-year survivor, and how she sadly lost her sister to the disease at 52. When asked how the diagnosis changed her, she said, “You learn to take life day to day and to appreciate it more. You live life to the fullest the best that you can.”

Darla Cunningham, a 16-year survivor, echoed Pat’s statement. “After being diagnosed, priorities change. Your main focus becomes on getting well,” she said.

Although every breast cancer survivor has their own story, both of these ladies shared the importance of having a faith as well as a strong support system. With 20 survivors showing up to this event as well as many others there to support it, it really brought the community together on an issue that affects the lives of many.