In July 2003, Kay Powell of Richmond, then 57, lost her job when her employer moved its manufacturing operation overseas.
Because of how she became unemployed, Powell was eligible for assistance with up to two years of schooling.
While she was exploring her career options, Powell was hit by an even greater challenge.
Her annual mammogram detected a lump in her breast.
That was on Oct. 4. Twelve days later, she was at Pattie A. Clay Hospital undergoing a lumpectomy.
“I was one of the luck ones,” said Powell, who moved to Richmond 26 years ago. “My cancer was detected early.”
The operation by Dr. Hamed Koury appeared to be successful, and she has been cancer-free for the past 10 years.
“I’m a strong believer in getting an annual mammogram,” she said, attributing her survival in large part to early detection.
With her surgery out of the way, Powell went back to thinking about what she would do for the rest of her life.
She decided Eastern Kentucky University’s child development program was the best fit for her, and both her husband and daughter encouraged her to enroll.
And after earning an associate’s degree, Powell went to work for the preschool program at Richmond’s First United Methodist Church.
She kept that job until her husband’s poor health led her to give it up to care for him.
While she was recovering from her surgery, Powell was visited by Arlayne Francis, co-founder of the Madison County Breast Cancer Support Group.
Members of the group visit breast cancer patients to deliver a “Recovery Basket” filled with items they will find useful after surgery.
The baskets typically are decorated with pink tissue and include items such as coffee mugs, candles, hand lotions, notebooks, coffee, tea, chewing gum, hard candies, devotional books and goodies from local beauty salons.
Powell appreciated the visit and the basket, but she didn’t get involved with the group until later.
While attending a Body Recall class, the exercise program for older adults, Powell noticed that she and another woman, Phyllis McDaniel, were wearing identical T-shirts promoting breast cancer awareness.
As they talked, McDaniel told Powell about her participation as an active member of the support group.
Recalling her initial experience with the organization, Powell decided to attend a meeting and has been active since.
Among the members are women who have been cancer-free for years longer than she, Powell said, and that helps give her hope of remaining free of cancer.
She also finds strength and satisfaction with the group to help others who are in the battle against breast cancer.
Powell was able to reassure a cancer patient who was anxious about taking a medication that she had taken. She shared her experience, telling the new patient about potential side effects and how to cope with them.
More recently, she worked a booth for the support group at a local fitness center to help raise money for a cancer patient to pay her medical bills.
On Nov. 2, she will be volunteering again, helping the group stage the annual Women’s Wellness Fun Day.
- Lifestyles & Community
Band students ‛take over’ MCHS campus
The Madison Central High School campus has been “taken over” for two weeks by 170 students attending band camp.
Warning labels needed on energy drinks
The popularity of energy drinks has soared since they entered the marketplace, but at least one consumer group wants the FDA to order warnings on product labels.
Full Gospel ‛Back to School Bash’ is Aug. 2
I guess everyone is asking, “How much rain did we get?”
Thank the Lord for the rain
Hello readers, it’s a stormy Monday evening as I write this, and I’ve been thanking the Lord all day for the good rain – over an inch in the gauge now, and it looks like more before morning.
Rain has helped lawns, gardens
Hello from Baldwin.
How is everyone’s week going? I hope everyone is having a great one.
Can you believe such cool weather in mid July?
Refreshing. That’s the word one TV weatherman described the upcoming days when temperatures will be in the 70s with virtually no humidity and lots of sunshine. Can you believe that in the middle of July? We can live with that, can’t we? We may even get close to setting a record for morning lows later this week. This has certainly been the year for strange weather!
Union City Baptist VBS July 20-25
Union City Baptist Church will have vacation Bible school July 20-25, 6 to 9 p.m., with classes from age 3 through high school. The theme is “Agency D3 Needs You.” Contact Brenda Parke, or call the church at 623-2845 for more information.
Local, regional products are carefully selected for Berea College Farm Store
A lot of thought and consideration goes into the product selection for the Berea College Farm Store.
Kentucky beef cattle market remains strong
The feeder cattle market shows no sign of weakness and seems to shrug off most anything that could potentially be seen as negative.
Planning for fall vegetables in the garden
It’s time to start planning how to continue enjoying your garden and even add new plantings.
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