May 19, 2011
By Anonymous

Cancer research is a very important issue to me because I have been greatly affected by the troubles of watching a loved one go through cancer over the past couple of years. In November of my sophomore year my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Luckily, through many surgeries, chemotherapy, and radiation she got through it; although it was a hard year for my whole family. I always wondered what would have happened if they hadn’t caught the cancer in time or even at all. I’m so grateful that there are people working hard everyday to find a cure for this awful disease.

My family and I have participated in many events supporting cancer research such as the Susan G Komen Race for the Cure and Three Day Walk and the American Cancer Society Relay for Life. My parents and I enjoy running already, so when we found out about these races, it just gave us more reason to want to participate. These events help show how many people are affected by cancer just in our community and how many people are willing to help by donating their time and money. These organizations are very helpful in raising awareness and money for research.

Cancer research has advanced eminently over the past few decades. In the 1940s only one in four people survived cancer, and by the 60s one in three people were predicted to survive. Today over 50% of people diagnosed with cancer are expected to survive and there are more than 10 million cancer survivors living in America today. Each year the numbers get better. My grandfather died of lung cancer before I was born so I never got to meet him. I think that if he had been diagnosed with cancer today rather than twenty years ago, there would have been a better chance of his surviving. Now that we have the Health Care Reform Bill, hopefully more cases of cancer will be caught in time, which will lead to more accurate research and more survivors. This is good because, no matter what treatment researchers find, it won’t be helpful unless everyone has access to it.

My hope is that one day there will be a cure and maybe even a vaccine to prevent cancer so that nobody will have to go through the pain and suffering of treatment or the stress of wondering if the cancer will be back. This is very important to me since my mother had breast cancer, and women who have mothers or sisters with breast cancer are about three times more likely to develop cancer. Hopefully, as research continues, it will be better for me and other people in my situation to not have to worry about going through what our loved ones have gone through.

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