Katharine Garner

Katharine Garner’s philosophy can be expressed in three words: surviving for Samantha. Her eight-year-old daughter Samantha has been a source of encouragement during Katharine’s battle with breast cancer.

“Sometimes she’ll say, ‘Get out, cancer!’ and she pretends to give it a karate chop,” Katherine said. “She is the reason I do this. She’s my inspiration. I’m surviving for Samantha.”

In March of 2014, Katharine discovered a lump on her right breast. Her doctor recommended she visit the Nash Breast Care Center right away. In addition, her cancer was “triple negative,” a type of cancer that is very aggressive. “I think, deep down, I knew that something was wrong,” she said. “You just sometimes have that feeling.” Katharine is currently being treated for stage 1 breast cancer.

Once Garner was diagnosed, Penny Hearn, the nurse navigator for the Nash Breast Care Center, sat down with her and mapped out her family tree, asking Katharine specific details about her family history. This genealogy is important to determine if patients should have testing to see if they are carrying the BRCA gene. Women with this gene have a dramatically higher risk for developing breast cancer than those who do not. Thankfully, Katharine tested negative.

“It’s good to know my daughter won’t have to worry about having that,” she said.

Nash and Edgecombe counties have some of the highest breast cancer rates in the nation. Because of this, the Nash Breast Care Center is dedicated to providing area women with the education and information they need to detect breast cancer early, when it is most treatable.

Katherine Garner, is one of many women in our area who have received treatment through the Nash Breast Care Center. We’re very proud that the center recently earned accolades for its utilization of 3-D mammography to better detect cancer in its earliest stages.

If only fighting breast cancer were as simple as a karate chop.