Candace's Breast Cancer Fund

Every year we participate in breast cancer awareness month, which is in October every year. I'm not a huge fan of donating to large non-profits that do little for those in need. Last year we participated in a GoFund Me for Matt Crane's friend Lindsay. This year we are doing a GoFund Me for my very close friend Candace. I'll give you a little back story:

Candace, Jared, Lauren and I had been planning our weddings together last fall and spring. Theirs would be in St. Thomas and then we would all travel to Greece for Lauren and my wedding.

Less than 2 months before both of our weddings, Candace woke up in the middle of the night and discovered a lump in her breast. She was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer on May 17th.

On June 1st, 29 days before they were to depart for their wedding, Candace had a double mastectomy with direct-to-implant breast reconstructive surgery. During the surgery it was discovered that the cancer had spread to her lymph nodes, which elevated her to Stage 2 Breast Cancer.

Because of her pending chemotherapy, Candace and Jared had to meet with a fertility clinic to discuss their options. By the middle of June Candace was having another surgery, this time to remove and freeze her eggs so when she comes off the last of her cancer drugs (tamoxifen) 10 years from now, they will still have an opportunity to have children.

Now post-wedding, Candace is currently undergoing chemotherapy. Originally, it was only supposed to be 2 months long, but because the cancer spread, her oncologist opted for 5 months of treatment and a total of 16 cycles.

Candace has been strong throughout and has begun blogging about her journey. She is using scalp hypothermia, which dramatically increases her chances of keeping her ginger identity by limiting hair loss to shedding rather than losing all her of her ginger locks. She estimates she's shed approximately 50% of her hair.

Candace also happens to be a doctor so she knows more about what's going on with her body, what the drugs will do, and how she will feel than most. Personally, I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not.

Weddings are expensive enough, add-in breast and reconstructive surgery, fertility treatment and surgery, cancer treatment, and scalp hypothermia treatment along with the out-of-pocket expenses and those not covered by insurance. This has been made a very expensive year for Candace and Jared. Because of everything she's currently going through Candace has even had to put her career on hold.

So this year, as I said, I am asking for everyone to come together and do a workout for breast cancer awareness on Saturday October 14th at 11am. It is rumored that her husband will be driving from
Tennessee to participate in the workout. So if you can, please donate to the GoFund Me for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


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Organizer and beneficiary

Paul Salvatore Amato II 
Long Beach, CA
Candace Hrelec 
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