Why I walk: Come Walk With Me participants share their breast cancer stories
Come Walk With Me is Pierce County’s largest breast cancer walk. The event, held this year on Oct. 5 in Sumner, will celebrate its 15th year of benefiting breast health programs and services at MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital.
We asked participants to share their stories — some longtime supporters and others who will be walking for the first time this year.
Jun Chea and Roger Smith
Jun Chea and Roger Smith are members of the Good Samaritan Foundation board. Chea’s wife, Jeannie, and Smith’s step-mother, Nancy, are both breast cancer survivors. Chea and Smith walk to support them, as well as other local survivors and patients who have been impacted by cancer.
"Breast cancer has touched both of our families and some of our friends, too,” they say. “We really like the idea of doing something local that will have a direct impact on our community — making funds available so that people going through treatment can do it locally with comfort and knowing that their community is there to support them. We walk because it makes a difference."
LuAnn Iselin was one of the founding members of Come Walk With Me. She started the walk in 2004 as a way for people show their pride for the Sumner community and to support local breast cancer patients. She is a survivor.
“I was a breast cancer patient — diagnosed in 2000,” Iselin says. “In 2003, the idea just came to me one day. I own a local business here and I just thought it would be really great if some of the merchants around town put together some kind of walk that community members could be part of and have it all go toward a good cause. I’m proud of how far it’s come.”
Stephanee MacDonald Myers
The first time Stephanee MacDonald Myers participated in Come Walk With Me was 2011. She and her team, Team Nana, have proudly walked every year since in honor of her mother, Nancy.
"My sweet momma utilized many of the services that this walk helps provide," MacDonald Myers says. "She has been gone for three years and we miss her every day."
October 5 will be Leslie Knowlton’s first time participating in Come Walk With Me.
She chose to sign up to support her sister and every other person in her community who has battled or is currently battling breast cancer.
“I walk for my sister,” Knowlton says. “She goes to chemo every Friday and has used some of the programs that this walk supports. We are so happy to be part of Come Walk With Me and love that the money raised stays here in our community.”
Come Walk With Me is a breast cancer walk held in Sumner every October. All proceeds benefit breast cancer patients and survivors who rely on MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital and the Good Samaritan Cancer Resource Center for breast health services. Learn more about how you can get involved.
Here's what the event looks like, along with a letter of advice from a breast cancer survivor:
About The Author
McKenna Ownby writes stories that connect readers to the impact of philanthropy.More stories by this author