CHARLOTTE, N.C. - A Charlotte couple, who have shared more than 40 years of marriage, also shared an experience that most couples never go through: fighting breast cancer.
“I don’t think we ever thought we would share breast cancer. Statistics show one in 20,000 couples, so we know we’re pretty special,” Mitzi Ellis said.
Mitzi and Steve Ellis’ fight against breast cancer began in 2009, when Mitzi got the news after a routine mammogram.
“'You have breast cancer,'” Mitzi said.
Doctors caught her cancer early, and after a lumpectomy and radiation she was cancer-free.
But in 2013, the cancer came back.
Mitzi had a mastectomy and has been healthy ever since.
But cancer would touch the couple again.
“I never though men could get this,” Steve said. “I was in the shower of the hotel and I felt a pea-sized little bump on my left breast.”
Steve was among the one in 1,000 men to develop breast cancer.
Steve also had a mammogram and mastectomy.
“I was honored to be able to have this opportunity to nurture him, advocate for him and do everything that he had done for me,” Mitzi said.
The couple are now on a mission to spread the word about early detection and encourage people to join the fight, which includes Charlotte’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk on Oct. 21.
“Show this community all the support, love and energy that’s around them and help the American Cancer Society find a cure,” Mitzi said.
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