Mary’s personal JOURNEY makes that her 2021 Word of the Year

All through 2021, we’ve had members of the 3-Day family sharing their “Word of the Year” with us. Each month, we’ll introduce a new person and share their word, why they chose it, and learn about their Susan G. Komen 3-Day experience along the way.

This month, we talked to Mary M., a fourteen-time crew captain (and sometime walker) who chose “journey” as her 2021 word of the year. That journey will be literal this year, as she travels to the San Diego 3-Day and joins us as part of 3-Day Nation.

Tell me about your 3-Day experience.

I’ve participated in Colorado, Arizona, Dallas/Fort Worth, Philadelphia, San Diego and New England. I’ve been a crew captain 14 times and have been a crew member on the Sweep team with my daughter and a walker in San Diego, also with my daughter. After my first walk back in 2001, I decided that crewing was more for me because of the time commitment required for proper training. However, during our time in a sweep van in San Diego, my daughter convinced me to walk again, which we did together the following year. That experience helped remind me and refocus me in my crew efforts!

San Diego 3-Day, 2017: Mary as sweep captain, her husband and daughter as sweep team members

What is your 2021 word of the year? 

My 2021 Word of the Year is Journey.

Why is that your word of the year?

2021 is my first year of retirement! I’m looking forward to experiencing the journey of retirement by taking some trips in our new RV. Hopefully we will even be able to journey out of the country again. With more time on my hands, I’m hoping to enjoy the journey of life at a slower pace, enjoying some of the simple things. I hope to read a lot of books – each book is a journey to a new place! I’m planning on taking the journey to San Diego this year.

Why do you participate in the 3-Day?

I started participating to honor my Mom, who had just gone through her first breast cancer experience. I’ve continued to participate because we MUST find a cure. Our family has been lucky. Though my mom had a recurrence 12 years after her original diagnosis, we still have her with us, cancer-free at age 86! Many families have not been as lucky. We need a world without breast cancer.

San Diego 3-Day 2019: Mary with “partner-in-crime” Carolyn on the beach

What does the 3-Day family mean to you?

I’ve met some amazing people through the 3-Day who have the same commitment to end breast cancer. Some are other participants, both walkers and crew. And of course, there’s the amazing 3-Day staff, many of whom have also become my friends. We are a mighty force, filled with determination! We’ve all laughed together, worked our butts off for long hours, cried together and supported one another. 

San Diego 3-Day 2019 Sweep Captains: Mary, her sister Janet and “sista” Carolyn

How does your word of the year connect to the 3-Day?

Each 3-Day is a journey. Many people travel from all over to participate—taking a literal journey. They all have their own motivations, usually based on their own life journey. Every journey has unexpected surprises, unforeseen joys and sorrows, and opportunities to learn and grow. What better description of the 3-Day!

Philadelphia 3-Day 2019: in the tunnel in the pouring rain

If you could share a message with the Pink Bubble, what would it be?

The Pink Bubble is one of my favorite places to be, where people are kinder than on the outside, where all have the same goal. What a great world this would be if each of us took some of that kindness and spread it to people outside of our bubble to help make the whole world a better place! We want to know: What is your 2021 JOURNEY link? Check back next month for the next blog post in our “Word of the Year” series.