Meet Your New Atlanta Coach!

We are so lucky to have great 3-Day coaches nationwide. They work around the clock to share advice, give support, and help you through every step of the 3-Day process. This year, we are excited to welcome a new member to that team: Coach Jennifer in Atlanta!

Coach Jennifer began walking the 3-Day in 2006, and says the event has “changed my life in such a wonderful way!”

She’s ready to make this Atlanta 3-Day a life-changing one for all her participants, too! She has already begun working with the rest of the Atlanta team, laying the groundwork for a memorable event in October.

“What an amazing group of coaches we have working on the 3-Day, especially in Atlanta! Their drive, compassion and love of the 3-Day is admirable! I’m so fortunate to have joined such an experienced and dedicated team!” she enthuses. “The resolve of this team is truly remarkable. There is nothing they won’t do to support me (as a new coach) and more importantly, our phenomenal 3-Day community in Atlanta.”

It is the community that Jennifer is especially excited to engage with this year, as she says the cheering stations (especially ones with children) were her favorite part of the 3-Day when she walked. She looks forward to meeting all the Atlanta participants and working towards achieving Komen’s Bold Goal.

Her personal goal for 2018 is much simpler but is one she wants all participants nationwide to remember.

“I will make my appointment and have my mammogram, then encourage others to do the same. Sure, it’s not fun but the alternative is far worse!

“Knowing the statistics is frightening enough. But it’s getting to know the people affected by breast cancer that has strengthened my resolve to fight. People like Bridget, who lost her battle with breast cancer before the age of 30, and Mary, a close family friend fighting this battle every day in her mid-70s.”

She certainly embodies her favorite quote from Shakespeare, “Though she but little, she is fierce.” We are so lucky to have Jennifer and her fierce drive on our team.

Want to know more about coach Jennifer? Here are some other random facts:

  • My two yellow labs, Maya and Biggs, are my favorite buddies on this earth! I’m happiest during our daily sunrise walks around the lake in our neighborhood.
  • I find organic gardening very cool, although I wish I had more of a knack for it.
  • My career started in the TV newsroom (many years ago!), writing scripts for our anchors morning, noon, night and yes, overnight.
  • When I work out, you’re more apt to find me rolling around on a yoga mat than working up a sweat.
  • I love Excel spreadsheets!
  • These days, my all-time favorite training song is “Raise Your Glass” by P!nk. She’s fun and feisty and kind of embodies the spirit I see in our participants on event! Then of course, there’s her name 😉

Meet Jaden C., Incredible Kid and Incredible 3-Dayer

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Happy Incredible Kid Day! We have plenty of Incredible Kids as a part of our 3-Day family, so this day is always a fun and exciting one to recognize the future of our pink family. They are the next generation of walkers, crew members, supporters and more. Every kid who joins this journey is making a difference towards reaching Komen’s Bold Goal.

One amazing (or incredible!) example of that is Jaden C. from the Atlanta 3-Day. He started off as a walker stalker, then Youth Corps member, and is now walking the full 60 miles alongside his “Nana” Gwen this year. This journey, she says, is all part of a promise that Jaden made to her years ago.

“I am overcome with pride to see Jaden’s continued commitment and dedication to the fight to end breast cancer! I could not have imagined he would ever be walking the 3-Day. He kept the promise he made as a new Youth Corps member years ago, which was to walk the 60 mile 3-Day as soon as he was old enough!”

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Nana was also the catalyst in Jaden’s joining the Youth Corps in his younger years. She encouraged him to apply, and he says he was “lucky” to be accepted. Since then, he has made friends and new family on the 3-Day.

Jaden says, “My Youth Corps involvement was an amazing experience over the past several years. I have met so many friends that I now consider family. We stay in touch and have formed a bond that can never be broken. Participation in the Youth Corps has changed my perspectives about commitment, dedication, determination and leadership in many areas of my life.

It’s personal and means so much to me in ways that many people wouldn’t understand. My Youth Corps friends promised we would someday all walk together as a team. I’ve wanted to walk for years and to finally be so close to doing so means the world to me. I can’t wait!”

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He is only months away from walking his first 60-mile 3-Day, and Jaden has already begun training and preparing. This spring, he will use his Track and Field practices to help sneak in extra training and has no doubt he will meet, or even exceed, his fundraising goals. He is motivated to keep his promise to his Nana, and all the walkers he has supported in years past.

“The camaraderie of people, the environment, the overall family affair aspect of the 3-Day, the celebration throughout Atlanta, and keeping my promise…That’s all what I’m most looking forward to.”

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Jaden truly is More Than Pink.

But, when we asked him who is More Than Pink in his own life, Jaden’s answer was easy. It all came back to his Nana.

“My grandmother (my Nana) is more than pink! She works hard for our family on a constant basis regardless of how she may feel. She’s battled through breast cancer before and, years prior to her diagnosis, lost her sister (who she watched battle this disease on more than one occasion), and she has had to adjust to a “new normal.” She encourages other survivors who now come to her with concerns and questions about her experience.

She has continued to walk and support the 3-Day for years. Nana and I walked together as 20-milers last year as the VA DUO! It was a privilege and pleasure to team up with her to walk in my aunt Debbie’s memory and in my Nana’s honor as a survivor. We crossed the finish line as a family along with Pink Angel Divas!

I will be her legs and strength this year! The journey is not over!”

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Gwen echoes his excitement, love and support.

“I am so proud of this young man who has fought to overcome so many obstacles in life. I believe his determination and outlook can be attributed, in part, to the experiences and lessons learned as part of the 3-Day family!

We (his family) are all so proud of him for embarking on this incredible journey for such a worthy cause because for us, IT’S PERSONAL!”

We are honored to be a part of your journey, Jaden and Gwen. We can’t wait to see you take on those incredible 60 miles in October in Atlanta.

Meet 3-Dayer and Survivor Diana Reid

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We are constantly honored and in awe of the strength and passion we see from all our 3-Day participants. We always endeavor to provide special support and love to our community of survivors and those living with metastatic breast cancer. They are the strength that gives walkers extra motivation, and keep us inspired all year long to continue working towards Komen’s Bold Goal.

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One such survivor is Diana Reid, who has walked 11 3-Day events in Atlanta, many of them side-by-side with her family.

She began walking in 2007 after being diagnosed the year prior with Stage 3 Triple Negative breast cancer. Her daughter walked with her then, and they were joined in 2009 by Diana’s sister, who had received her own breast cancer diagnosis that year. By 2015, Diana’s daughter-in-law had also joined the 3-Day Medical Crew, and Diana’s younger sister had crewed the Atlanta 3-Day as well.

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She says, “The support we get at the 3-Day is incredible! Not only by the crew and staff, but by the community as well. It makes you feel like you are doing something important. Because so many of my family members have been affected by breast cancer I feel a great need to try and contribute any way I can to find a cure.”

The 3-Day weekend is truly a family affair for Diana. That is because so much of her family has been touched by breast cancer, and benefited from Komen-supported research and grants.

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In January of this year, Diana got the call telling her that there was a lesser-known rad51c gene mutation that has been linked to ovarian and breast cancer, and that she had this mutation. She later discovered that her father, daughter and younger sister all also had the mutation.

Since then, she has undergone a complete hysterectomy and a double mastectomy. Her daughter also had double mastectomy as a preventative measure.

“I have always believed that the funds raised by the 3-Day for research are important, but this year that has really hit home for me and my family. Not only has research enabled me to cut my chances of a re-occurrence by 99% but it has also enabled my daughter to cut her chances of a diagnosis.”

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That’s why they are going to keep creating memories together as they continue to walk in what Diana calls an “overwhelming and incredibly fun” weekend. They are all already excited for 2018 and to return to “the excitement on the faces of the staff, walkers and crew from the moment it starts until the moment it ends.”

Most importantly, they are never going to give up.

Diana promises, “We will all continue to participate in the 3-Day as long as we are able or until a cure is found.”

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