Mother and 4 daughters-Locks of Love

Relay for Life-Ilion High School

I grew up beginning at the age of 4 or 5 with my mother suffering from breast cancer. She survived her first case and then she suffered her second session of breast cancer when I was 15. It was her third bout of cancer (Uterine) that took her life six years ago on April 10th. I never really understood what cancer was all about, but I knew that my mother was gravely ill growing up. I remember hearing my mother crying a lot and being bed ridden most of the time. I also remember as a teenager watching her comb her hair and hearing her cry because it was falling out into the comb. How it broke my heart. How could someone so young understand why her mother was so ill? I hadn’t anyone to turn to or speak to about my mother’s disease nor anyone to help me understand what was happening to her; I was a child, was I really supposed to understand it? It wasn’t until this past Saturday that I really knew what love and compassion was all about and how people bond together during tough times. I went to my first Relay for Life at the Ilion High School. I met up with a woman named Angie, who lost her little boy Cody a couple of years ago to cancer. She was the first to come and greet me and welcomed me aboard, so to speak. What a wonderful and caring woman she was…so bright and energetic and so “on fire” for this benefit. Her little boy had died from this terrible disease and she was so comforting to me... I met many, many other wonderful people that have suffered loss of loved ones or who were survivors themselves. I watched a selfless mother with four of her daughters cut their hair to give it to “Locks of Love” that day and another young woman who had just finished her last chemotherapy session that morning and was there to support the cause. They had asked me if I was from the newspaper because I was taking pictures, and I told them no, I was here because my little grandson was suffering stage 4 Wilms Tumor and that I was so overwhelmed by the love and selflessness of perfect strangers for such an amazing benefit that I needed to capture it all in pictures so that I could share some of the love. I was so moved by everyone…the singing, the praying, the hugging, the handholding…the simple words that were spoken so softly from everyone…words of faith, hope and healing. I have never been moved by anything so much before in my whole life; so moved that I have decided to form a “Team Aiden” next year for my grandson. There is hope where there is love…and the Relay for Life was truly filled with many hearts and much love. Thank you so much to everyone that participated in the event…thank you for hope, but most of all for your love. God bless you all so much…Faith McLeod

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micky says ... on Wednesday, Jun 17 at 7:50 PM

what a great story. i was with the girl who cut the hair. you and aiden are in our hearts. we hope to see you next year. good luck and god bless

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Joanne Weber says ... on Wednesday, Jun 17 at 9:51 AM

This is such a beautiful story...thank you for sharing this with us.

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