Local News

Breast cancer survivor helps other women fight the disease

Posted February 26, 2010 5:30 p.m. EST
Updated February 26, 2010 6:23 p.m. EST

— Breast cancer survivor Valarie Worthy's life is consumed by service to others.

Worthy used her experience with breast cancer to help found Sisters Network Triangle, a support organization for black women with the disease.

“You are not alone,” Worthy says to women facing the disease. “I went through it and I survived it and you can do the same.”

Worthy is also a registered nurse and administrative manager at Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center in Durham.

“If I can change one life, one person’s life, from the story that I’ve lived,” she said. “I think that my living won’t be in vain.”

Worthy said her dream is for everyone to have equal access to health care and for women to be educated on the importance of mammograms.

“When I look at the mortality rates they’re not getting better for African-American women, so I know that my job isn’t complete until we can see rates that are really making a difference,” she said.

Most of all, Worthy wants women to know that while going through treatment can be a challenging and difficult journey, they can make it.

“I went through chemotherapy and I went through radiation and look at me now,” she said. “Look at the face of survivorship.”

Worthy has received many honors over the years for her work in the fight against breast cancer, including a survivor’s award from the Komen Foundation and The Martin Luther King Junior Community Caregiver Award.

WRAL-TV celebrates Black History Month with Living the Legacy. This month-long campaign spotlights the accomplishments of local individuals who are living the legacy of their ancestry and great African-American leaders.