Region 8 group gathers to fight ovarian cancer

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - A group of Region 8 residents gathered together in the fight against ovarian cancer. Around eighty people attended a luncheon hosted at Liberty Bank in Jonesboro.

There several speakers talked about the disease, it's symptoms, treatments available and what everyone can do to help.

The luncheon was held in loving memory of Teresa Ashley.

Teresa worked as Vice President of Liberty Bank and died from ovarian cancer last year.

One of Teresa's friends, Maleisa Finch, says she and others are working to raise this awareness for Teresa, "We want to make people realize that ovarian cancer is something that we need to make people more aware of detecting this disease. We are doing this in honor or one of our friends to carry on one of her dreams."

Maleisa says Teresa was full of life, funny and brave during her fight to the end.

"She was unbelievable. She fought so hard to beat this disease. She stayed happy and had a smile on her face the entire time and she touched many, many lives when she was fighting her battle."

Right now, the group is calling themselves "Teresa's Talking" in honor of their friend.

"She was always looking to do something for somebody and I think this would make her so proud, right now."

Maleisa says this luncheon is just the beginning.

"The next steps for us to move forward is to get together with the Ovarian Cancer Society to see what we have to do to begin raising funds for research. We plan to make this a yearly thing."

September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month and members of "Teresa's Talking" decided to draw some attention to themselves and the color. . .by painting their toenails!

"Teal is the color that represents ovarian cancer. Teal toes is the first step toward making people realize what is going on. We have seen that when we walk around with teal, people look at us funny but then they ask and it gives us an opportunity to explain that this is a representation of ovarian cancer and the fight to find a cure."

Maleisa says by this time next year, they want everyone to know the color teal and what ovarian cancer is.

"We are trying to raise awareness of ovarian cancer. The symptoms, where we go with it and to someday see it as familiar as a pink ribbon is to breast cancer and to see a teal ribbon is familiar with ovarian cancer."

Here are just a few of the symptoms of ovarian cancer.

First, know your body. If you are experiencing abdominal bloating, causing pressure or discomfort, pelvic pain, difficulty eating or feeling full quickly, urinary urgency or frequency, or fatigue and any of these signs are unusual for you and persist for two weeks or more, see your physician.

Second, be sure your tested! An ultrasound may determine if something is wrong, and might save your life.

Ovarian cancer is the fifth leading cause of cancer death for women thirty-five to seventy-four years of age.

Ask questions, stay informed and above all pay attention to the signs because "Teresa is Talking" to you.

For more information about ovarian cancer, log onto their website.

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