Like Mother, Like Daughter“I wore this 20 years ago when I did the Weekend to End Breast Cancer. I wore it 10 years ago while I was fighting for my life...and now I’m giving it to you.” —Debbie Wallace
Twenty-one years ago, Debbie Wallace participated in the inaugural Weekend to End Breast Cancer. Debbie walked to commemorate her mom, who succumbed to breast cancer in 1990, and to celebrate her sister Marilyn’s survival after a breast cancer diagnosis.
Debbie asked her colleague Amanda if she would take on this challenge with her and just like that, they began fundraising. After weeks spent knocking on doors, they finally raised enough money to participate.
Event day arrived and the two women, more determined than ever, set off on their trek, fanny packs in tow. 60 km and thousands of steps later, they crossed the finish line together and were greeted by their families, who were in awe of their remarkable achievement. But sadly, Debbie’s experience with cancer was far from over.
In 2011 she was diagnosed with stage 2 colon cancer, then metastatic liver cancer in 2012. During treatment, Debbie struggled to find the perfect pouch to carry her chemo pack in. Then she remembered the fanny pack that got her through the Weekend to End Breast Cancer and she decided to use it again. Just like she did all those years ago, Debbie drew strength from that fanny pack.
In 2022, Debbie's daughter Stephanie, inspired by her mother's journey, joined The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation and participated in the Walk to Conquer Cancer. Touched by her daughter's dedication, Debbie passed on her fanny pack that symbolized resilience, strength, and hope. “I wore this 20 years ago when I did the Weekend to End Breast Cancer. I wore it 10 years ago while I was fighting for my life,” said Debbie. “And now I’m giving it to you.”
Stephanie shared this story at the 2022 Walk to Conquer Cancer, celebrating the fact that thanks to life-saving cancer research, Debbie was able to witness her daughter cross the finish line and carry on her legacy. Like mother, like daughter.
Although the event once known as the Weekend to End Breast Cancer has transformed into the Walk to Conquer Cancer, the core message remains the same: by walking, you demonstrate an unwavering spirit of resilience and determination in supporting life-saving cancer research. Join us as we come together for the Walk to Conquer Cancer on September 9, 2023, continuing the legacy of the event under its new name.