The statistics tell the story: every two minutes a woman in the U.S. is diagnosed with breast cancer; breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the U.S, second only to lung cancer; and one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and Bullard is proud to join the fight to help raise awareness of this disease. We have seen breast cancer death rates drop over the last 30 years, mostly because people are more aware of the disease and the importance of early detection through campaigns like this one. In fact, women are 35 percent less likely to die from breast cancer today than they were in 1989.
Chances are you know someone who has been affected by breast cancer because it will touch all of us in some way during our lifetime. Perhaps it’s a close friend, a co-worker, or a family member. Breast cancer has no boundaries. Just ask Katrina White, a Bullard employee for almost 15 years. White knows all too well the effects a breast cancer diagnosis can have. “Our family was celebrating Easter when my mom took me aside and told me she felt a lump in her breast,” said White. “I never imagined having a conversation like that with my mom. It’s just not something you think about.” Yet, those were the words spoken by White’s mom before she learned she had Stage 3 breast cancer in April 2014.
White learned from that conversation that the lump her mom felt had been there for nearly a year. “I was angry but mostly scared when mom told me how long the lump had been there,” said White, who knew waiting a year could have life changing consequences for her mom. “Mom was afraid to get the lump checked and didn’t want to worry the family,” White added. “I’m just thankful she told me when she did.” White’s mom along with her team of surgeons and oncologists moved quickly once the diagnosis was determined.
Following a successful surgery, White’s mom spent a year having chemotherapy and radiation treatments and today is cancer free. When asked what the hardest part was for White as she watched her mom battle through her breast cancer treatments, she says it was the reversal of roles. “Mom is the rock of our family and seeing her sick made me realize how vulnerable she could be,” said White. “Mom needed support and I became her caregiver and her rock. It was my turn to help mom through this difficult time, just like she had helped me through the tough times in my life. I needed to be strong for her.”
Looking back, White remembers thinking how tired her mom seemed before the diagnosis. “I just blamed it on mom getting older,” said White. “I realize now that the worry mom put herself through by not getting the lump checked earlier, took a toll on her. She looks amazing now. She has that bounce back in her step again. I’m pretty sure she has more energy than I do on some days.”
White knows how lucky her mom is that her cancer was not fast growing and encourages all women to get checked early. “Mom is one of the lucky ones,” said White, “but she took a huge risk waiting as long as she did before seeing a doctor. Thank goodness mom’s team of doctors moved so quickly to diagnose and treat her cancer.” White added, “Mom’s a remarkable woman with tremendous strength and courage. I’m so thankful we fought this battle together and so proud to be her daughter.”
According to the American Cancer Society there are more than 2.8 million breast cancer survivors in the U.S. You can learn more about breast cancer prevention and early detection from the American Cancer Society at www.cancer.org. Throughout the month of October, Bullard will donate 10% of proceeds from selected pink Hard Hats sold in October to support the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer. To order a pink Hard Hat, contact Bullard Customer Service at 877-BULLARD in the U.S. or +1-859-234-6616 for international calls.
Bullard is an internationally known manufacturer of high-quality personal protective equipment and systems designed to help save lives. Founded in 1898, Bullard serves workers in the industrial, fire, and law enforcement markets with product lines that include respiratory protection devices, hard hats, face protection, thermal imagers, and fire and rescue helmets. Headquartered in Cynthiana, Kentucky, Bullard is a fifth-generation family-owned company. Bullard maintains sales offices in Europe and Asia in addition to its headquarters in Cynthiana, Kentucky, USA. For more information visit Bullard’s website atwww.bullard.com or call Bullard Customer Service at 877-BULLARD.