Komen Race helps fund a local jewel: River Bend Cancer Center

It's two days and counting until the Susan G. Komen Northern Indiana Race for the cure and River Bend Cancer Services is thankful for all Komen does.

River Bend Cancer Wellness Center is a jewel in South Bend providing help for people with all types of cancer.

But for those fighting breast cancer, this is a special weekend.

River Bend has become a needed respite for many, like 67-year-old Kathy Hill of South Bend.

Last November Kathy got a call from her doctor after her routine mammogram.

She says she was frightened by what she heard, "He basically said he wanted to talk with me and I said, 'what about?" and he said, "it's not good."

While Kathy's breast cancer was state one, it is also referred to as Triple Negative meaning it can be extremely aggressive and more likely to recur and spread.
Kathy had a lumpectomy and chemotherapy.

She says the diagnosis really sent her to a bad place emotionally and River Bend's counseling services gave her hope. "i am really different today then the day I came, Remember that movie Network? When the guy yells, 'I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore?' That's how I felt."

Kathy is still fighting but her energy is returning and she's looking forward to taking part in the many programs River Bend offers that deal with issues like chemo brain, exercise and nutrition.

And she says thanks to River Bend she is better able to handle the radiation she is undergoing.

Like many people, Kathy's insurance wasn't enough to cover all the medication she needs, so those and her nutritional supplements and a wig are paid for by River Bend. They also help women with prosthetics and bras.

Just some of the services Director Kate Voelker says River Bend provides and she says their services are unique.

River Bend works with all cancer patients on any quality of life issues from medication to counseling. Kate adds, "It's very unique and not available in the general community. Money doesn't need to be an issue. You just can't imagine how happy somebody is when they know they don't have to worry about that one thing, because there are so many things to worry about."

And if you wonder where how the Komen Race for the Cure helps River , Kate says greatly. "That funding makes the services we provide to people like Kathy possible."

And for Kathy, that has made all the difference in the world as she continues her own race for the cure. "Life is not perfect and it never will be, but it's really made a difference."

To learn more about River Bend Cancer Wellness Services in South Bend and Saturday's Race for the Cure you can go to our website, WNDU.com and click on the Big Red Bar.

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