Komen Race for the Cure funds patient support & research - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Komen Race for the Cure funds patient support & research

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - It's terrifying to be told you have breast cancer. It happens to one in eight American women. Thousands are expected to gather in Balboa Park this Sunday to help change that statistic, including two brave San Diegans who are determined to help find a cure.

Sharon Stephens and Irene Oberbauer are confirming final details for this Sunday's Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. The volunteers are united by their passion to help others, and their personal triumph over breast cancer.

"Three years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. My sister was diagnosed 10 years ago and my mom was diagnosed three weeks after I was, so we're a family of survivors," Sharon said.

"And I'm a very recent survivor; I just completed radiation June 29 of this year," Irene said.

Both women endured the physical and emotional toll of breast cancer.

I was so sick and so exhausted and trying to take care of my kids and be strong for them," Sharon said.

"I said to myself I'm not different than anybody else, I gotta pull it together," Irene said.

According to the American Cancer Society , more than 207,000 new breast cancer cases were diagnosed nationwide this year. Those statistics are the driving force behind the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.

"The Race for the Cure is so important because 75 cents on every dollar we bring in stays right here in San DIego County to help an uninsured woman and her entire family," San Diego Komen for the Cure Executive Director Laura Farmer Sherman said.

"Eighteen percent of women diagnosed with breast cancer are facing the question, 'Do I pay for my rent or do I pay for my chemotherapy?' The money that's raised in the Race for the Cure pays for everything from free mammograms and free surgery to child care, mortgage payments and even meal delivery," she explained.

The remaining 25 percent of race proceeds goes to research for new treatments -- and hopefully a cure.

"Definitely our treatments are getting better and better, so the survival rate continues to improve, and research such as Komen has really helped us in discovering that and figuring that out better," UCSD Moores Cancer Center Breast Care Unit Dr. Anne Wallace said.

Irene and Sharon are looking ahead to this Sunday's race, and a world without breast cancer.

"It's making that difference, it's giving a voice to all these women fighting for the disease," Sharon said.

"My goal is to get through this alive, and I can proudly say at this moment, I am cancer free," Irene said.

Irene has been named the honorary survivor of Sunday's Race for the Cure. We'll be there cheering both Irene and Sharon, and lending our support in the fight against breast cancer.

Registration opens at 6:30 a.m., and the race begins at 8 a.m. For more details, click HERE.

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