Richland Township resident Kathy Moran had a busy 2011.
For years, she looked forward to a career in nursing. With all four of her sons in school, and encouragement from her husband, the time seemed right. She enrolled in September.
Ever vigilant about health issues, Moran had her yearly mammogram that summer. The discovery of a cyst had doctors concerned enough to ask her to return for a follow-up exam in six months.
Moran was just 48 and had no family history of breast cancer, but in January, when she returned to her doctor, it was discovered there had been a dramatic change.
“I had stage 1 breast cancer,” Moran explained.
“They removed the tumor in February.”
She will always be glad she followed her doctor’s advice and returned for another test. “If I didn’t follow up, it would have been a lot further advanced.”
Subsequent treatments included six months of chemotherapy.
It was “tough,” Moran said of the treatments. But a woman she met on her very first day of chemo helped her get through.
“We had the same treatment plan,” Moran recalled. “Meeting her made the difference in how I did. I did great.”
She was thrilled to learn chemotherapy was not as bad as she believed it would be. “It’s your attitude for sure, but the drugs make it very doable,” she said.
“Life didn’t end at our house,” Moran noted proudly. She laughed as she recalled one of the boys calling while she was getting a treatment to tell her “they were starving and wanted me to bring something home to eat.
“Nobody wants this diagnosis, but when you get it you have to decide what are you going to do. Life still goes on. It’s just part of your life.”
Her husband and sons gallantly pitched in. “We went through it as a family.”
The boys – ages 11, 13, 15 and 17 – handled her battle with cancer “very, very well.”
Moran said her 13-year-old helped out by volunteering to shave her head before her hair fell out.
“He did a great job,” she said. “I think maybe it helped him accept it.”
Moran recently started radiation and said she is doing well.
She and her family are appreciative of the help and support they received from friends, neighbors and caregivers. “The folks at The Joyce Murtha Center were amazing.”
She also is grateful to God “for helping me get through this with the prayerful support of friends and family.”
The demands of her treatments forced her to postpone her education plans, but Moran will soon be back on the path to becoming a caregiver herself. She anticipates resuming her nursing classes in January.
She said she has changed the way she eats and now walks about three miles a day.
When asked what she thought was the most important message she wanted to share with readers, she didn’t hesitate.
“I can’t say enough about the importance of regular mammograms,” she said. “And anticipation of returning to the pursuit of my goals kept me focused and motivated.”
Richland Township resident Kathy Moran had a busy 2011.
- Local News
Tornado vets balance preparedness, practicality
Few things in nature are less predictable than a tornado. They can form quickly. They strike weirdly, leveling one building while leaving its neighbor untouched.
Salisbury proved it can happen here
It was an event that many residents of Salisbury, Somerset County, would have laughed off prior to it spinning through the small northeastern town and shaking it to its foundations. A Category F3 tornado touched down on May 31, 1998, carving out 10 miles of homes, businesses and livelihoods.
When the storm hits
Tornado survivors and seasoned observers suggest people do two simple things to prepare for tornadoes: Know where to take shelter, and move quickly when the time comes.
9 Dems vie for 4 council spots
Democratic Party voters will have a crowded field of Johnstown City Council candidates to choose from on Tuesday.
With four seats open, nine individuals entered the race. The top four vote-getters will advance to this fall’s general election. Also, two Democrats originally joined the race for mayor, but the death of Anthony Gergely has left Frank Janakovic as the only remaining candidate.
Primary turnout likely will be low
The weatherman is promising warm temperatures and rain-free skies on Tuesday, the day of the primary election in Pennsylvania. But the good forecast may be overshadowed by a lack of voter interest in what is shaping up to be a mundane election.
Mudslinging hits the small time
It’s not just for presidents, governors and legislators anymore.
The time-honored American tradition of the smear job has hit close to home – specifically, the council race in Meyersdale Borough and the supervisor race in Stonycreek Township, Somerset County.
A Johnstown icon passes on
Carmel C. Coco of Johnstown, who was known for his skill at repairing shoes as well as his love for music, died peacefully at home on Saturday at age 95.
Rendezvous attracts diverse crowd
A few grandparents watched their little loved ones inspect the beautiful nature – grass, rocks, trees and bugs – at Greenhouse Park on Saturday. Some young men and women strolled throughout the grounds with cold beers in their hands on a sun-splashed spring day. Other campers sat around fires, playing guitars, telling stories and sharing laughs.
IN BRIEF | Solomon stabbing under investigation
A stabbing occurred at the Solomon Homes housing project in Johnstown on Saturday.
BILL EGGERT | ‘Gatsby’ still great nearly 90 years after debut
A new movie just released based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s great American novel “The Great Gatsby” is here.
The Baz Luhrmann film is the fourth major theatrical movie based on the classic novel.
- More Local News Headlines
- Tornado vets balance preparedness, practicality