SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Beginning at dawn Friday, Matt Baylow and I will be joining thousands of San Diegans on a bold 60-mile journey.
The Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure kicks off at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Every year, I'm inspired by the stories of hope and survival as walkers endure aches, pains and those dreaded blisters to raise money for a cure. Walkers like singer, mother and survivor Mattie Mills.
Friday begins Mattie Mills' first 3-Day for the Cure, a new path along her five-year journey with breast cancer.
"I'm walking in the 3-Day cause I can and I made it to the other side. I've got something to say, I've got something to show to others, that there is life after breast cancer," she said.
I first met Mills back in 2007 when she was named honorary survivor of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.
"You're stripped of your hair, my breasts were gone, everything was gone, and all I had was my soul," Mattie said.
She also had the incredible spirit to fight this disease.
"It was as if I put on my Cowgirl boots, hopped on my horse and said let's get this done, cause I'm not going down and cancer is not taking me down," she said.
It's that same spirit that will inspire me, News 8's Matt Baylow and 3,600 walkers in this year's San Diego 3-Day for the Cure.
"The San Diego 3-Day is a life changing journey for men and women who want to make a significant difference in the fight to end breast cancer," Sheri Phillips, MD said.
Survivor, physician and 3-Day national spokesperson Sheri Phillips says it's statistics that drive this journey.
"In 2010 more than 1.6 million new cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed. Somewhere in the world someone dies from breast cancer every 74 seconds," she said.
Three days, 60 miles symbolize the road of hope, the road toward a cure. Every walker must raise a minimum of $2,300 before taking their first step. Proceeds fund research, treatment and support.
"Every dollar that we raise makes a difference in our fight to end breast cancer," Phillips said.
As a teammate of "Putting our Breast Foot Forward," Mills is ready to embrace this three-day journey. It will be her journey for a lifetime.
You can follow this amazing journey on News 8 and cbs8.com. Matt and I will be sharing our stories, images and blogs.
For more information on Susan G. Komen for the Cure, please click HERE.