Gerri Willis has been a familiar face on FOX Business as an anchor and personal finance reporter since 2010. On Wednesday morning, Willis announced in a very touching opinion piece posted on FOXNews.com that she has been diagnosed with breast cancer.
In her article, she shares that the type of breast cancer she has represents only 10 to 15 percent of all breast cancer cases. It is not detectable by a mammogram. Just as she has educated people on issues regarding personal finance throughout her time on FOX Business, she opened up about this very personal time in her life to educate women on this issue.
She opens up by discussing how she has always considered herself to be a trailblazer. However, according to Willis, her cancer diagnosis made her no longer a trailblazer but instead a member of a club she never dreamed she would be in.
I’ve always prided myself on being different and forging my own path. I was the first woman in my family to earn a college degree. I was the first (and still the only one) to move to New York to start a career. I like being different. But that changed on April 28. — I’m no longer a trail blazer. On that day, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and became one of a large and growing number of women with breast cancer, the second leading cause of cancer death in women.
More than 307,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year alone in the U.S., according to the American Cancer Society . One in eight or 12 percent of women in the U.S. will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. Survivors of the disease number 2.8 million, including those still being treated. As a breast cancer patient, I have plenty of company.
This is not a club I asked to be a member of. But there you have it. Getting people to talk about it is not easy. Even medical professionals struggle with saying the “C” word. My tests were “positive.” That’s how my doctor described them when she gave me my diagnosis. It was up to me to fill in the blanks. “I have breast cancer?” I responded. “Yes,” she said.
I’m not the kind of person who enjoys talking about my medical conditions but I am talking about this – and here is why: The type of cancer I have is called lobular and represents just 10 to 15 percent of breast cancer cases. It’s not what you expect – the cherry or plum shaped tumors easily spotted by mammograms. My cancer tumor is shaped more like a miniature Mars bar. It’s oblong. One of the healthcare experts I talked to described it as “stealthy.” A cancer shape shifter. And, for that reason, it’s difficult to detect by mammograms.
Willis said her cancer is in stage 2 and her recovery prognosis is very good. She will begin treatment next week at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center where she will undergo a mastectomy, followed by chemotherapy and possibly radiation.
She shared the news of her diagnosis on Twitter where she was met with an outpouring of love and support.
— Wendy (@WendyHaring) May 18, 2016
@GerriWillisFBN You’re a strong woman & will beat this. We are all praying for you. May God be with you in your battle.
— Count Clayton (@CountClayton) May 18, 2016
@GerriWillisFBN Like millions of others, I don’t know you but feel like I do. You are an incredible woman. You can beat this!
— New Knee (@CNoon1) May 18, 2016
Some of her FBN colleagues also tweeted encouragement and support.
@GerriWillisFBN is class personified – most optimistic outlook on life will serve my friend well but sure she wouldn't mind if we prayed too
— Charles V Payne (@cvpayne) May 18, 2016
READ the full article by Gerri Willis about her breast cancer diagnosis and recommendations for what every woman should do on FOXNews.com.