Pink Courage: Komen Ozark Affiliate Director Shares Her Story

ROGERS, AR - She's a familiar face at just about every Komen event in Northwest Arkansas.
But for the first time, Ozark Affiliate Executive Director Mary Alfrey is talking about her own story in the fight against breast cancer...
Alfrey moved to Northwest Arkansas in April 2013.
She came here to take over as the executive director of the Ozark Affiliate of The Susan G Komen For The Cure Foundation.
And on race day in 2013, Alfrey was there, front and center.
"You know I recall experiencing that sea of pink and then the mass of supportors that head out to the race and it was just so inspirational," Alfrey said. "Little did I know that this year, it will take on a whole new meaning for me."
The fight against breast cancer was already personal for Alfrey because her sister is a survivor.
But soon it became even more personal. Just a few months after the race, she went in for her routine mammogram and discovered she had the disease.
"I had a very invasive kind, and so we caught it early. And so the screening is so very important," she said. "We say it saves lives, and it saved mine, and so you've got to go in and don't be afraid because the outcome would be much worse if you wait."
Alfrey just recently finished treatment, including a lumpectomy, chemotherapy, and radiation.
She said: "You really realize how important the people are in your life. I've really learned how fortunate we are in Northwest Arkansas, and that's one of the things I love about this organization, is how much money we put back into Northwest Arkansas."
And that's where you come in: The Race For The Cure is Komen's largest local fundraiser.
75 percent of the money raised at the event comes right back to our area; the other 25 percent goes to research.
And Alfrey wants folks to remember it's not just the money that helps, because every person that laces up on race day is another sign of hope,
"One of our top fundraisers is 11 years-old," she said. "She sent me a note that she wanted to run in celebration of me, but I guess I'm really running in celebration of what I've been through but and for the future and for the people that we've lost along the way as well."
Last year, the Ozark Affiliate granted out to local programs more than $600,000. But more than $1 million worth of help was requested.
In other words, the need is great, which is why Komen is asking for your support.
Click here to learn more.

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