In Memorandum – Jan Deer // BRAvo! 2016
Jan Deer shared her story of her battle against breast cancer in her own beautiful words before her passing in 2017.
I was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer, which had metastasized into my right lung. Dr. Tom Grayson took immediate action to have 2.4 liters of fluid taken from my right lung. He performed a needle biopsy and at that time my life changed forever.
Dr. Grayson, Dr. Derek Serna, Dr. John Kuhn and Dr. Paul Howanitz, along with their teams, have provided excellent care and have supported me through this entire event. My cancer navigator, Jill Miller, is just awesome. To this day she checks on me every day to make sure I am doing ok.
I could not have made it through without all of my caregivers and my Reid Family – particularly Dr. Tom Huth and his wife Mary. They prayed for Roxie and I and checked on me every day. One day in particular I remember well. I had been off of work for 5 days with the flu. Anyone who knows me well knows that missing 5 days of work was a big thing for me. I decided to come back in to work for a few hours on what turned out to be the coldest day we had all winter. Dr. Huth encouraged me to stay home, but I needed to get out, so I bundled up and headed to work. When I arrived, he came to check on me and made sure I had worn the right warm weather gear to stay warm. As he left our office, he asked my co-worker Sheri Barfield to make sure my face was covered before I went out into the cold air. Dr. Huth is a very caring man and an awesome boss; I am proud to call him my friend.
And last but not least, my beautiful daughter Roxie Grace is my rock. She has been beside me through this life changing event and reminded me every day that everything would be ok and that we would get through this together. At the age of 24, Roxie put her education on hold so she could take care of me. Before I came home from my hospital stay, she made sure everything in our house was in order. She hired a housekeeper, knowing that I could not keep up with it. She was always there when I needed her and she is still is always there. My saying to her everyday is “You are my sunshine” and believe me, she has been my sunshine all along this rough road we have traveled together since January 2015.
On that day, I came to realize just how important it is to get a mammogram. There is no excuse for any woman not to get one.