JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The first honorary survivor for the Jonesboro Race for the Cure is someone well known to many in the community.
Brandie Lieblong has battled breast cancer since Sept. 2015 and with her willingness to fight for a cure and raise awareness, she is the Jonesboro Honorary Survivor for the 2017 Race for the Cure.
According to Candace Cooper, chair of the race and Lieblong's best friend, Lieblong inspired her to accept the position as chair of the event.
"I think for everyone who has a friend or family member who is going through something difficult you want to offer support and love in any way you can and I thought this was a perfect way to show my love for her," said Cooper.
Lieblong has fought the fight against breast cancer with strength and a smile on her face.
Cooper said it is hard to speak about the race without crying because she knows everything Lieblong has gone through and knows her willingness to fight is more than encouraging.
"She has epitomized grace and strength, I know so many people are touched," said Cooper. "She is a physical therapist. People are touched by the work she's done for so many families and I am just so happy to be able to do something to support her back."
Lieblong said even if it has been a long journey to health after her diagnosis, she is forever grateful for her family, friends, co-workers at St. Bernards hospital and more importantly, Cooper.
Now, as a breast cancer survivor, Lieblong lives to encourage others.
"I am extremely honored to stand here and to continue to be an inspiring individuals to others to let them know you're not the only one out there fighting and there is also survivors," said Lieblong. "You have to get up, get dressed, put one step forward, and go!"
Lieblong said she is also very thankful for events like Race for the Cure.
"The race coming to Jonesboro is incredible," said Lieblong. "The reason why I am standing here today is because of organizations like Susan G Komen. It is because of the funding and research they've done that this illness is curable for me."
Friday, a NEA Race for the Cure meeting will be held at noon at St.Bernard's Imaging Center to introduce the race and begin planning.
Cooper said having this race in Jonesboro will affect the entire community of Jonesboro in some way because all will be touched by breast cancer at some point in their lives.
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