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Buddy Check 3 August

Updated: Saturday, August 3 2013, 01:50 PM CDT
Hundreds of local walk teams are getting ready for Thursday's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kick-off.
   
It's a comeback story. A sometimes sad story but most of all this is a love story. Just months after Gerry and Katie Snell's wedding, Katie was diagnosed with breast cancer.

"The love of my life, very inspirational, he's always, always been there for me," said Katie. "I remember the fear in his face."

The newlyweds weathered that medical crisis and soon faced another one. Katie lost her leg after a fall and a post surgery infection.
   
Katie says depression set in and a major weight gain ensued. Two years ago she had weight loss surgery. Three huge medical setbacks but three triumphs too.   

"Don't let anything get me down anymore, I mean, there's some days where I've fallen and I get mad and cry, and then I get back up and laugh," she said.
   
And walk. That's Katie's new goal. Not just around the block but in the October 27 Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk that is 3.2 miles.

"We're gonna take the cane along, just in case and I'll have my husband over there to pick me up if I stumble," she said.
   
Katie is doing intense physical therapy three times a week, three to four hours a day.

"A major accomplishment from where she was three months ago, she couldn't do this three months ago," said Gerry.
   
Simply standing up has been a revelation.

"That is so much better cause usually people, they don't look you in the eye, the either look at your leg or turn away but now I can look at everybody in the eye and it makes a difference," Katie said.
   
Gerry says seeing his wife stand on her own was a proud -- and symbolic moment.

"Yes it was, cause it was another step she has taken to get her life back," he said.

Katie lost her mother and grandmother to Stage 4 Breast Cancer when both women were in their fifties. She's close to the age when their cancers returned. She admits that's a frequent concern of hers. One reason she stays so involved with the local branch of the American Cancer Society. A group she says has supported and backed her recovery for more than a decade. 
   
"If not for the ACS and their research, breast cancer might not be survivable, and it is," she said.

Along with her team -- Team Pink -- she'll walk hand in hand with her faithful nurse, cheerleader and husband.
   
"That's gonna be wonderful. To see his face light up when I'm walking is all worth it," Katie said.
Buddy Check 3 August


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