RICHMOND, Va. – A Central Virginia event, which has raised more than two million dollars over the past 20 years, has helped lead to advances in treating all cancers in women.
It's crunch time for Judy Turbeville, who is one of the many volunteers putting the finishing touches on the Women And Wellness Event, which benefits VCU Massey Cancer Center.
Turbeville, who has been involved with the event for years, has a personal connection the event.
“My family has had cancer for generations, so we're very passionate about this,” Turbeville said.
In fact, Turbeville’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was a young girl.
"I grew up thinking breast cancer was one of the worst things to happen to a woman,” said Turbeville, who was diagnosed with the same cancer in her 50s.
Then, her daughter was diagnosed.
Turbeville, who ended up getting radiation and a lumpectomy, was diagnosed again in June, 19 years between her cancers.
"The treatments were more advanced this time,” she said.
Turbeville, who received most of her treatment at Massey, said research has led to better treatment for all cancers.
Dr. Mary Helen Hackney said advances are happening from better surgeries to better drugs. She says the use of genetics is the next big thing.
"You raise money to support those researchers, help in development of trials, to help bring new drugs to be tested,” Hackney said. "Soon we're going to be able to look at the cancers better and know the person’s needs type of treatment. This person needs this type of treatment."
Turbeville hopes even more advances will be made so that her 9-year-old granddaughter will not be the fourth generation to fight breast cancer.
The 20th annual Women and Wellness event is Tuesday, Feb. 3 at the Jefferson Hotel.
Actress Meg Ryan, who is directing a movie here in the Richmond area, is the keynote speaker.
The event has raised $2.5 million over nearly 20 years that has stayed in Richmond to fight women's cancers.