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On September 10, 2016, Midland’s own Melanie Smith will run in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in New York City. Melanie is a staff accountant at Midland and breast cancer survivor. Midland takes great pride in its employees’ success, personally and professionally. Melanie’s story inspires us and Midland is proud to support her as she joins thousands of others in New York City for this event. This is her second year participating in the event.

During an annual checkup a few years ago, Melanie’s doctor asked her about a dimple in her left breast. Her cancer was not a lump or discoloring of the skin like she so often read about. She had her first mammogram two days before Christmas. Doctors found a suspicious mass. When the biopsy results came in, she was told it was cancerous. A mastectomy and immediate reconstruction was ordered. After surgery, they found it had spread to the lymph nodes, making it stage 2 breast cancer. She would have to undergo chemotherapy.

After six grueling months of chemo, Melanie was cancer free.

In a Facebook post, she detailed the optimism that every cancer patient must find after receiving their diagnosis:

“I went into this with an attitude that I want to live and I am going to do this as positively as I can! … I’m officially a chemo/cancer survivor! I don’t think I would’ve made it through so well without Faith, Love and Support from my Mom, family and friends, company family and my stubbornness to keep a GOOD attitude throughout this journey!”

Melanie’s message to anyone suffering from cancer is simple:

“I went into it with a very positive attitude and knowing I’m gonna knock this out. This isn’t going to stop me. I was going to get my chemo treatments and keep working…Just be positive. No matter how serious, even some stage four people think there’s no light at the end of the tunnel. But if you can just be positive, force yourself to be positive almost and enjoy every moment that you have as much as you can!”

After her one year checkup, Melanie was still cancer-free. She relayed a message of positivity to her friends.

“Now I move onward and upward. Looking forward to a brighter, happier and more conscious life. We only get one, so let’s focus on the good, great and AMAZING things we make out of it. Live aware, laugh a lot more and love everyone, even if they think you’re weird.”

It’s estimated that one of every eight women will be affected by breast cancer in their lives. If you would like to learn more about the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure and the organization as a whole, please visit the Komen website. Join us in showing our support for Melanie by using the hashtag #MelTakesNYC.