September Pink Bubble Story of the Month: Rowena K.

Every 3-Day walker has a reason behind why they partake in this momentous event. Some walkers join the Pink Bubble to do some good in the world while others walk in honor of a loved one or their own survivorship. No matter the reason, every step has a story. Discover Rowena’s incredible testimony as she embarks on her fifth 3-Day in New England. 

In 2009, Rowena observed the dedication and passion that her sister exuded while walking the 3-Day. Her sister’s courage and determination to raise awareness, gather donations, and complete the 60-mile mission left an indelible mark on her own spirit. However, it wasn’t until a profound personal loss struck her closest circle that Rowena’s call to walk grew even stronger. Her best friend, Laura, valiantly fought a four-year battle with cancer and tragically passed away at the tender age of 45. Witnessing her sister’s experience during the 3-Day and subsequently losing Laura ignited an unyielding resolve within Rowena to embark on this meaningful journey. Sadly, another heartbreaking loss came in 2019 when her sister-in-law, Beverly, lost her fight against breast cancer at the age of 57, leaving behind a loving husband and three beautiful young daughters. 

With her heart heavy, Rowena took her first steps on the Susan G. Komen 3-Day in 2010. Year after year, she walked with renewed determination, participating in subsequent events in 2011, 2012, and 2021. For her fifth year in this empowering journey, Rowena walked in the 2023 New England 3-Day alongside her three nieces, Raney, Ryann, and Roxsan, to whom she will pass the torch. Walking with the next generation, she felt a deep sense of fulfillment, knowing that the legacy of compassion and determination will continue.  

Reflecting on her previous experiences, she cherishes countless memories that have touched her soul. Each 3-Day that Rowena has participated in has brought her the gift of new friendships, profound stories of strength, and moments that she will hold close for a lifetime. She shared that the camaraderie and support she found amongst the fearless people she’s met along the way have forever changed her life, leaving an enduring imprint of gratitude within her heart. 

When asked about the best advice she’s received regarding the 3-Day, Rowena highlights the significance of preparation, injury prevention, and staying hydrated. From training tips to walking techniques, she emphasizes the importance of setting goals and wearing proper shoes to ensure a comfortable and successful walk. 

Additionally, Rowena feels strongly that the importance of raising funds for this cause cannot be overstated. She speaks to how her efforts have enabled the provision of vital education on breast health, free resources & screenings, and a compassionate hand to hold for those navigating the complexity of combatting breast cancer. Furthermore, these funds offer essential emergency assistance to underserved breast cancer patients facing financial crises while undergoing active treatment. By supporting this cause, Rowena feels that she is making a tangible difference in the lives of individuals and families who need it most. 

To those who may be contemplating joining the 3-Day but have yet to take the leap, Rowena urges you not to hesitate. She assures that the 3-Day is an empowering way to show your support and that you will never regret making this commitment. The impact of participating in this event extends far beyond yourself as it has the power to transform countless lives. By participating in the 3-Day, you can become an agent of change, advocate for hope, and a beacon of support for those affected by breast cancer.  

She described this year’s experience as unforgettable. She and her nieces had time to bond, laugh, cry, and celebrate as they walked together through the streets of Boston. Although this most likely marked Rowena’s final 3-Day as a walker, she looks forward to participating as a crew member, volunteer, or cheering supporter, because her commitment to this cause remains as strong as ever. She looks forward to passing the 3-Day Walker torch to her nieces in 2024 as she takes some time to let her body rest, heal and recover. Rowena truly embodies what it means to be a member of the Pink Bubble. Brimming with unwavering determination, we can all find the strength to stand beside those affected by breast cancer and raise our voices while we walk. Together, we can bring about a world free from the clutches of this devastating disease as we walk to find the cures for breast cancer. 

See previous Pink Bubble Story of the Month blog posts here. 

Every walker has their story. What’s yours?