An estimated 15,000 participants flooded downtown streets Sunday morning for the 15th annual Komen Austin Race for the Cure. For breast cancer survivor Latanya Tatum, this race day is especially significant.
"Today marks my seven years so on November 10, 2006 at 5:34 p.m. I received phone call from my doctor and he told me, 'I don't have good news. You have breast cancer,'" Tatum told FOX 7. Now, as a survivor, she continues to be involved with Race for the Cure and raises awareness of the "Practice what you Pink " campaign which encourages people to donate locally. "The reason this is so important to me is I never know if I may have to be back on the receiving end of these donations, it is very important to me."
Of the funds raised by Komen Austin, 25% go toward breast cancer research. The rest stays in Central Texas to provide screenings, medical services and support for breast cancer patients and survivors.
"I'm 16 years out from my diagnosis," says Ronnis Calmer, "so, I've been a survivor quite a long time and I've worked with newly diagnosed women and I've worked with people who have been diagnosed in the last few years who are going through things." She provides a sense of hope to those who have been recently diagnosed.
"Every time I get into a group with people who are newly diagnosed and I tell them how many years ago I was diagnosed, I can see the faces light up," Calmer says.
This year, she's one of Komen Austin's 'Fab 15," a group of 15 people from the community who have been impacted by breast cancer. "It signifies the 15th year Komen Austin has been doing the race and I think it's wonderful that people keep coming out here year after year."