Category Archives: Stories of Hope

Personal stories from cancer survivors.

Cancer Bell Gets First Ring

Nila Ringing Cancer Bell

BCPC member Nila Florschutz rings the Cancer Bell signaling her last chemo therapy

Breast Cancer Prevention Coalition (BCPC) member Dr. Perica “Nila” Florschutz, retired MD, was the first patient to ring the new “Chemo Bell” at Georgia Health Sciences University’s outpatient Cancer Center. The bell was donated by the BCPC to honor all patients battling all types of cancers. It is similar to one in the inpatient cancer unit.   When a patient completes the last round of chemotherapy, he or she rings the bell and everyone celebrates.

Nila was treated for adenocarcinoma of the colon and had her last chemo in October.  With this behind her, she plans to “Live, Love and Laugh”.

Originally from Dubrovnik, Croatia,  Nila  has lived in the U.S. for 38 years.  She spent most of that  in  the Washington, D.C. area, Minnesota, and Florida, before following her two children and four grandchildren to Augusta, Georgia. Her son received a residency for the M.D./Ph.D. program in Orthopaedic Surgery at Augusta’s Medical College of Georgia (now GHSU) in 2007. Her daughter worked in research and moved to Augusta in 2009.

When asked why she joined the BCPC, Nila explained “I met [BCPC President] Nita Zachow, who introduced me to the organization. I have really enjoyed the socializing and friendships that have come from it. I find the goals of the BCPC amazing and am proud and happy to be a part of it.”

Welcome to the BCPC, Nila, and congratulations on completing your chemo!


Nila with her nurse Angela

Nila with her nurse Angela


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Filed under Events, Member Spotlight, Stories of Hope

BCPC Wants Your Story to Share with Others

BCPC member Celeste Spence is leading the effort to set up a BCPC Speaker’s Bureau and assemble a Testimony Book(let).   Speakers will be asked to share their “cancer stories” with small and large groups of folks who are interested in cancer research and prevention. BCPC will use the Testimony Books with newly diagnosed cancer patients, relatives and friends who need to see “hope” and reality from people who have walked the walk and faced the enemy, cancer.

We encourage anyone who has experienced cancer personally, or has shared a cancer diagnosis with a loved one, to write about the experience and e-mail it to Celeste at  All stories will be edited by a team of English teachers and will be printed grammatically correct. The length of one’s story can range from a few paragraphs to 5-10 pages.

Please send us your “Cancer Story”  today.

E-mail your story to

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Filed under Breast Cancer Awareness, Mentoring, Stories of Hope, Volunteering

Help The Augusta Chronicle Think Pink

The Augusta Chronicle thinks pink in preparation for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In October, they will feature stories of local breast cancer survivors in their Faces of Survival series.

Why not submit your story? Simply click here to submit your story to The Chronicle.

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Filed under Breast Cancer Awareness, Stories of Hope

The Story of My Card

by BCPC Member Karen Marks

My theory in life is that things happen for a reason so I began praying to God that, if he gave me breast cancer, there must be a positive reason for this. I always try to have a positive outlook in my life! I asked God to guide and direct me. If there was something special that he wanted me to do regarding breast cancer then he better be pretty direct with me because, as I told him, I am pretty dense!

After saying this prayer for a few months, I suddenly had a dream or vision about my breast cancer painting. The dream was so real and the picture I was to paint was in every detail. I sat down and drew the picture pretty quickly. Right after drawing the picture, the idea came to mind about turning my painting into a card and giving a portion of the proceeds to BCPC for breast cancer research.

Watercolor by Karen Marks

The watercolor resulting from Karen

I have had 500 cards printed and I have applied to the SC Department of Revenue for a license so that I can sell this card. I will make personal sales as well as make wholesale sales to gift shops, boutiques and anywhere else I can think of to sell this card. If this proves to be successful I would like to create a website for my card, any future artwork and future cards. From everything I sell I will donate 25% of my proceeds to BCPC. I am thinking my business could be Watercolors for a Cure! Anyway, I will take this one day at a time and see where God takes me next.

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
Romans 12:12


Filed under Fundraising, Stories of Hope

Stories of Hope

From the Augusta Chronicle, Thursday October 30, 2008

Nita Zachow

BCPC Board Member Nita Zachow

“In August 1997 the day after I had completed my 30th and final radiation treatment, I was walking my 9-month-old granddaughter around our backyard in her stroller while my mother watered flowers nearby. I asked Mother to watch Sarah while I went inside to prepare the baby’s lunch. When I returned several minutes later, the grassy spot where I left Sarah playing in her stroller was empty. My mother, who was spraying flowers near the deep end of the swimming pool, had rolled the stroller closer to where she was watering but failed to apply the brake. The hose had pulled the stroller into the water and my mother, who was 78 and hard of hearing, hadn’t heard the splash. I looked in the water and saw my granddaughter still buckled in the stroller resting on the drain in the middle of the pool. I was in my weakest state that day. A month prior to this, I had 28 lymph nodes removed and could hardly lift my right arm. God chose to perform a miracle. I dove in the water, which was 9 feet deep, and God gave me the strength to lift the baby and stroller to the side of pool. She was gray when I got her out of the water. I prayed “God help me!” while administering CPR. On the third attempt, she took a breath. Today Sarah (also pictured) is 11 years old and a gifted, straight-A student. She plays the piano, violin and softball.”

More stories about and by BCPC’s, Nita Zachow:

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Filed under Stories of Hope