Hollywood glitz and glam to celebrate National Survivor's Day
Sunday is National Cancer Survivor's Day and the Upstate Cancer Center celebrated the day in style with a Hollywood-themed celebration. As YNN's Erin Clarke tells us the event was about more than just celebrating survivors.
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LIVERPOOL, N.Y. -- Felice Clark is a survivor. Cancer hit her twice. She had Leukemia at age 21 and then later Rhabdomyosarcoma. A disease that usually requires part of a patient's leg to be removed.
"Adults normally don't live past six months, but here I am. You know it's been since 1999. I'm the longest living adult with my extremity in the world," said Clark.
She's just one of more than 500 people who celebrated life with their friends and family at the National Survivor's Day celebration hosted by the Upstate Cancer Center. People who are using their stories of survival to inspire others.
"I have some good friends, Harold Bennet, he's going through brain Cancer and I made a vow that I would help anyone who has brain cancer or cancer. I do what I can do for them. And he made a complete turn around," said Brain Cancer survivor, David Townsend
Their stories are varied. Their ages range from very young to 85 years old, but what they all have in common is they've made it through the disease, some as long as 25 years Cancer free.
And just as much as this event is about celebrating survivors, it's also about celebrating family -- biological and also the family made among people who are battling cancer and also have survived it.
"We have many people since we've been doing this now for the 15th year that see each other year after year, several groups that actually come back and get reunited with the people that they sat with last year," said Upstate Cancer Center Office Manager, Tina Evans.
They're building bonds that help keep one another going, even when the times get tough.
"I don't care how long you've been Cancer free it's always around the corner, so you need to recharge,' said Clark.
And what better way to do that than with food, fun, family and friends.
National Cancer Survivors Day is traditionally observed on the first Sunday in June. This years marks the 25th annual observation.