SPECIAL REPORT: Buddy Check 7: Defying the odds

Published: Nov. 4, 2016 at 4:34 PM CDT
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A dozen years after a breast cancer diagnosis gave her 6 months to live, Bobby Helgeson sits down with NewsChannel 7 again. Talking about her fight with the disease and the future.

Bobby Helgeson said the diagnosis turned her world upside down. "I cried but I never planned a funeral,” she recalled.

Not making those final arrangements turned out to be the right move for her.

She found a lump under her armpit putting on deodorant more than a dozen years ago. Her doctor, Rezwan Islam said just realizing something wasn't right was the first step in Bobby's fight.

"But it is important that a person is aware of herself and have an active and healthy lifestyle," said Islam.

It turned out to be a rare form of breast cancer, already well advanced. But, as she shared in a Buddy Check 7 report in 2004, she was determined to fight back. She received what was considered cutting edge treatment in 2004.

Bobby was going through that treatment when one of the lights of her life came into this world. Cancer and the side effects from treating it would not stop her from being there.

"Because I was given 3 to 6 months, I wasn't supposed to see my first granddaughter being born. I had gone to chemo, but I left because she was born in Green Bay," said Bobby about heading to the hospital where her granddaughter was born, against doctor's orders.

Now, 12-years later, that first-born granddaughter Bobby was never supposed to see is in junior high. She's also grandma to two others.

And as Bobby shares her story with Buddy Check 7 one more time, she has these words for other people attacked by the disease.

"Don't give up, there's always hope."