One in eight women in the US will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. These women will face one of the hardest, and scariest adversities of their life. In this moment, these women are faced with a decision – on what meaning to give their diagnosis, and how they will choose to show up every day after that. And somehow, that’s when many of them burn their brightest.
What all of these women have in common, is that they don’t let this disease define them. They call upon stronger values instead: love, courage, hope, empowerment, humility, and generosity. These women gain remarkable inner strength from their struggles, and often times are fighting their fight not for themselves, but for others.
To the warrior women fighting breast cancer today, to the fallen heroes who fought it yesterday – October is for you. For the world to acknowledge your courage, your light, and your impact.
At Eterneva, we’ve been humbled to serve many of these warrior women by turning their ashes into diamonds. It’s unsurprising that their families want to do something of this level for them – they absolutely earned it. We’ve been so inspired by these families that October has become a month very near and dear to our hearts. We feel it’s our turn to give back to this cause, and also share the stories of remarkable women we’ve lost to breast cancer that deserve not to be forgotten.
The Story of Karen & Stephen Youngerman
Karen Youngerman of Southern California is the embodiment of a warrior women. She fought breast cancer for over a fifth of her life. When she was first diagnosed in 2003, she took that as a call-to-action, to get involved with Susan G. Komen, and fight her fight alongside many other courageous women.
Karen dedicated herself to this cause, walking in SEVEN 60-mile walks for the cure and crewing dozens of others. As her husband Stephen put it, “these events were her ‘happy place,’ and over the 14 years she fought this cancer, her belief and positivity was unwavering, and served as a source of strength for many others.” In 2017, her last walk, she only had the strength to go out and cheer on the walkers, but she did it with everything she had.
After Karen’s passing, her widower Stephen decided to continue to carrying her torch in the fight against breast cancer and walk seven 60-mile Susan G Komen Race for the Cure events in just one year! As Stephen says, “We must never give up. We must keep up the fight. We must do all we can.” We have the great honor of helping Stephen turn Karen’s ashes into a pink diamond, so he can take her with him on his walks to the cure.
Support ‘Race for the Cure’
Like Karen, Stephen is admirably choosing to create meaning from adversity, and he could use our help.
“To prepare for the seven walks I am undertaking this year, I have been training every day since I lost Karen. That’s the easy part frankly. The hard part is raising the money needed to participate in the walks. Each walker is required to raise $2300 per walk. That means I’m personally required to raise $16,100 to participate in the seven walks.”
Inspired by Stephen and Karen both, the Eterneva team put our heads together to figure how we could contribute. First, we decided to walk 60 miles alongside of Stephen, in the Susan B Komen Race for the Cure event in Dallas, November 2nd through the 4th. We figure, if he can do seven events this year, we can at least do one 🙂
But our team still wanted to do more. So for the entire month of October, Eterneva will donate 10% of all diamond proceeds to Race for the Cure. If you have lost a remarkable loved one and wish to turn their ashes into a diamond, we will pay it forward.
If you are not looking to have a diamond created but would still like to join us in this fight, we would love to have you join our walking team! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to walk with us 🙂 If you can’t walk, there’s still one more way you can help. You can choose to donate (any amount helps) here.