Inspiration for Cancer Fighters
- Gemma Weeks, 37, was told she might never speak again after her surgery for stage 4 mouth and neck cancer.
- But she’s defied the odds and has re-learned to speak after losing nearly all of her tongue in treatment.
- Sometimes hearing inspiring stories while you’re faced with a cancer battle can be a huge help. If you’re in need of inspiration, we’re here for you.
- One inspiring cancer warrior is Sean Swarner. After being told he only had a couple weeks to live as a teen, he grew up to conquer some of the world’s toughest mountains.
- Another resilient cancer warrior is Lilly Bumpus. After surviving Ewing sarcoma as a baby, she went on to break the record for the most amount of Girl Scout cookie boxes sold in a single season.
The 37-year-old’s cancer journey began six years before her diagnosis when a small white patch appeared on her tongue. Eventually, the spot became a small hole with the pain forcing her to the hospital. That’s when Weeks, of England, found out she had stage 4 mouth and neck cancer.Read More
More Inspiration for Cancer WarriorsCancer can be a physically and emotionally exhausting experience. So sometimes a little inspiration with stories like that of Gemma Weeks can go a long way. Here at SurvivorNet, we have had the privilege of sharing many inspiring stories about people faced with cancer. One such cancer warrior is Sean Swarner.
SurvivorNetTV Presents: ‘True North’ — A Story of Formidable Obstacles and Unwavering Determination
At ages 13 and 16, Swarner was diagnosed with two different kinds of cancer. His doctors told him he had a couple weeks to live during his second cancer battle, but he refused to let himself be consumed by the prognosis.
“I didn’t choose to go crawl up in a corner and die and think, ‘Okay, well, that’s it, I’m done, game over,’” Swarner told SurvivorNet. “Nobody knows how much time you have left on the planet. So, what I wanted to do was make the most of it. If the prognosis is going to be alive for 14 days, I wanted to truly love and live life. I still do.”
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Other Resilient Cancer Survivors
Now in his 40s, Swarner has done exactly that. He’s known as The Cancer Climber because he’s embarked on many a daring hike to test his own endurance and share his message of hope and triumph with cancer patients worldwide. Check out SurvivorNetTV’s documentary True North to follow Swarner’s journey to the North Pole as a part of his Mission of Hope – a series of climbs where he brings a Flag of Hope signed by cancer warriors to every peak.
Another heartwarming story we love to share is that of pediatric cancer survivor Lilly Bumpus. After receiving a diagnosis of Ewing sarcoma – a rare type of bone cancer often found in children and young adults – in 2012, she underwent an intense chemotherapy regimen and surgery to remove some bones from her chest wall all before she was 1 year old.
One Tough Cookie: Resilient 8-Year-Old Who Overcame Ewing Sarcoma Sells More Than 32,000 Boxes of Girl Scout Cookies To Break Record
Thankfully still in remission today, she’s grown up to be quite an accomplished young lady despite still dealing with side effects from her intense treatment. She sold more than 32,000 boxes of Girl Scout cookies amid the COVID-19 pandemic to break the record for the most amount of boxes sold in a single season.
“My favorite thing about Lilly is that she never gives up,” her mother, Trish, told SurvivorNet. “So, Lillybug got to 10,000 boxes one week into Girl Scout cookie season. Never, ever has that happened. So we went from there. I then approached Girl Scouts and said, ‘What happens now if she sells 20,000 boxes?’ And they said, ‘20,000 boxes, yeah, okay.’ So we said, ‘Game on.’ So then we sold on and sold on, and she got into 20,000 boxes.”
“And then we went to 32,000,” added Lilly.
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