I loved the responses I got from my dedication post Friday. Ultimately, I'll dedicate my walk to several survivors, but in the meantime, I wanted to share their stories with you. I'll post one dedication each Monday until my walk in October. Keep the stories coming to jillianduch@hotmail.com.

Here's the first, from a veteran walker named Venice:

I've been doing different walks that raise money for Breast Cancer Research for about 9 years now. This year I will not be able to make it because I will about over 6 months pregnant, and my doctor said she probably won't clear me. My first year doing the Breast Cancer 3-Day was on September 2008 in San Francisco.

No one in my family had any history of Breast Cancer. Until one of my older sisters was diagnosed with it.

I walk in memory of my older sister, Richelle, who was diagnosed with Breast Cancer at the age age of 26, and passed away on December 2004 a few months after her 32nd birthday. She outlived the numbers her doctor told her when it spread from her breast to her spine. Then we she went into remission for a few months only to find out that the cancer had spread to her liver. The doctors told her she only had 6 months to live, and she fought it for 2 years.

I had fast forwarded my wedding so all my sisters could be standing by me when I got married. She stood there by my side in the heat (when she wasn't feeling well), and when offered to give her a chair to sit down, all she said, "I don't want to take away the attention from Venice. It's her special day." So, she stood there smiled throughout the ceremony, and no one new she was ever in any pain. She took pictures with us and came in for the reception, but didn't stay long.

A month after my wedding, she was in the hospital. We spent most of November in the hospital. We took over the waiting room pretty much every day. Doctors told us she wouldn't make it pass Thanksgiving, and once again she proved them wrong. We had Thanksgiving with her and other families who's loved one was also had cancer. She was a fighter till the very end, when she fell into a coma.

We all told her it was okay for her to go on, and not to suffer anymore. She passed away December 3rd, 2004.

I didn't hear about the 3-Day till the year 2008, and boy did I have such a great time. So, many wonderful people that never knew you cheering you on and helping you make it through those 60 miles.

I am very sadden I won't be able to do it this year, and so I would like it if you can dedicate this walk in honor of my sister, Richelle. I don't only walk for in memory of my sister, I walked in memory of others who have lost someone to Breast Cancer, and for those who have survived. I walk so no one ever has to loose a love one to Breast Cancer! I will return next year in 2010!!! -Venice from San Francisco, CA

(Venice, I don't have your e-mail address or anything, but I plan to pick a few people to dedicate my walk to. Your sister definitely will be among them. Best wishes for you and your baby. :) -- Jillian)
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