Saturday June 11, 2016 

 

Community
Battle of the Inspired 

She beat cancer...twice

Kerstin Butzelaar, Canadian Cancer Society

 

t 18 months old, Lindsay was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. She received chemotherapy and radiation treatments until the age of five and later became an outpatient, receiving yearly checkups until she was 17-years-old. Lindsay was in remission for 25 years before her next battle with cancer.

 

“One day I got a phone call from an oncologist saying that I was on a watch list for patients who were diagnosed with cancer and that had received treatment in the 80s,” says Lindsay. “This list was to make survivors aware of the potential diseases and cancers that could have been caused by the treatment we underwent at that time. To humour them I went in and they discovered that I had advanced thyroid cancer.” 

 

After 25 years of living cancer-free and at the time 30 years old, Lindsay had surgery to completely remove the cancer. She also received radiation induction treatments to kill the remaining cancer cells, causing her to be in isolation for three days. Lindsay has now fought and won two battles with cancer.  

 

It was during her first journey with cancer that she found the Relay For Life community and began participating with her friends. She says “participating in the Canadian Cancer Society’s Relay For Life provided me with a sense of home and camaraderie throughout my treatments and while in remission,” says Lindsay.

 

“Cancer isn’t going away,” says Lindsay. “It’s important to help the Society in their fundraising and other initiatives so other people don’t have to go through what I went through.”

 

Lindsay now also volunteers with the Surrey Relay for Life as a committee member. Her inspiration to become more involved as a committee member was derived from her desire to ensure there are continued resources and support available for others with cancer if they need it.  

 

“Whether you are donating your time or making a monetary donation, you are helping someone,” says Lindsay. “You are contributing to research, support services or cancer prevention initiatives that will help make a difference for someone and their family.”

 

The Surrey Relay for Life is taking place Saturday, June 18 at the Bill Reid Amphitheatre. Offering a 12 hour timeframe (11am-11pm), the event has already attracted over 45 teams. The theme for this year’s Relay is “Through the Decades”, a celebration of fun, fashion and memories of the last century.

 

Participants are encouraged to dress up and decorate their team sites in their choice of decade. From the roaring twenties to the grunge rock scene of the 90’s, the Surrey-Delta Relay for Life is going to be one for the ages!

 

Interested participants and teams are encouraged to accept the baton and visit www.relayforlife.ca/surrey.

 

 

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