Last May, Jenny Rader was confronted with a challenge that everyone fears but for which no one can be fully prepared to face: she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
A 33-year-old mother of four young boys and a nurse at WCA Hospital, Rader received treatment at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, eventually undergoing a double mastectomy and becoming cancer-free last July.
While her personal battle with cancer is now over, she is continuing in the fight against breast cancer by holding a fundraiser on Saturday and Sunday to raise money for the Roswell Park Cancer Institute's Bosom Buddies Walk, an event supporting the funding of the Western New York Breast Resource Center. Rader participates in the event along with her family, friends and other supporters who have a desire to help her cause under the "name of Jenny's Rack Pack," who are one of the many teams from the Western New York area walking and raising money for the Bosom Buddies Walk.
Jenny Rader with her family and members of her team, Jenny’s Rack Pack, at the 2013 Bosom Buddies Walk in East Aurora.
The first Bosom Buddies Walk was held in 1995. In the 19 years since then it has raised over $1 million in support of the Western New York Breast Resource Center. The center, which is free and open to the public, helps patients and families throughout their treatment by providing information and personal support. The Bosom Buddies Walk helps the center to continue its many services such as providing informational materials, emotional support for patients and their families, and wigs for patients while they undergo their treatment and recovery.
"It is crazy how many people you talk to have been affected by breast cancer in some way, whether it is a person's family member, a friend, or themselves personally," Rader said.
Rader was inspired to participate in the Bosom Buddies Walk after receiving help from the Western New York Breast Resource Center during her time at Roswell Park.
"I have four young kids, so when I was diagnosed it was really tough for me."
"I have four young kids, so when I was diagnosed it was really tough for me," Rader said. "I didn't know how to handle it, and they were able to give me resources."
The Bosom Buddies Walk works like many other benefit walks such as Relay For Life in that it consists of various teams who raise money though pledges and donations. To raise money for her own team, Rader is holding a garage sale and hot dog sale on Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at The Spire Theater, 317 E. Third St., Jamestown. The Bosom Buddies Walk will be held on Sept. 13 in East Aurora. For questions or donations, Rader can be reached by phone at 581-0919 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.