Duncanville ISD Donates to the Fight Against Cancer

Filed under: Schools |

According to the Susan G Komen for the Cure organization, at least seven million people die of cancer and close to 11 million new cases are diagnosed each year. Some of the families affected are right here in Duncanville ISD. October is National BreastCancer Awareness Month, dedicated to increasing awareness of the importance of early breast cancer detection.That’s why recent district events honored anyone who has battled cancer.

The Duncanville ISD Athletic Department hosted its second annual Pink Out Day during the DHS varsity football game with South Grand Prairie on October 14. Pinking out Panther Stadium, many attendees wore “Panthers Knockout Cancer” t-shirts, which were sold during previous weeks. Four thousand dollars were raised from t-shirt sales and donated to the Komen group. DHS football parent and cancer survivor Lisa Jenkins was handed the big check during a special halftime ceremony. “We wanted to recognize her because she is a representative of the success of these efforts,” said Pink Out coordinator Christina Valderas.

Lisa was diagnosed with Stage 2 triple negative breast cancer in April of 2008. Relocating to Dallas just six months before, she says the diagnosis was hard to handle. “It was intense at first. I was scared to tell my sons. Most people automatically think that cancer is a death sentence, but my doctors gave me a good prognosis because we caught it early.”

After a yearlong series of treatment, from surgery to chemotherapy to radiation, Lisa is now in remission.  She’s back in the bleachers cheering on sons Samuel and Aaron Jenkins, who both play for the DHS varsity football team. “I am THE football mom,” she said. “Cancer was the only thing that could make me miss a game.” Lisa credits her sons’ team with helping them get through the difficult times, and says that a strong support system is critical for any cancer patient. “The road to recovery is a difficult one that requires a lot of inner strength. My advice to others is to not give up and not let your family give up. I’m very proud of my boys. They continued to do well in school despite everything, and even though I know that they were scared, they didn’t show it.”

April 2011 marked the three-year anniversary of Lisa’s diagnosis, and in celebration of her victory she became an ambassador for the Susan G Komen for the Cure organization. She’ll be volunteering at the upcoming 3-Day for the Cure charity walk and is helping to raise funds as part of the Pink Tiger Lily team. You can read more of Lisa’s story and hear from her sons in a Panther Prints story by Taylor Harris.

Reed and Kennemer middle schools held a Pink Out Day of their own on October 12. Staff and students wore pink shirts and donated $1 to support the cause. Together the schools raised $490 and donated the money to Reed Middle School counselor Valencia Williams, whose life has been impacted by breast cancer.