TRUMBULL, Conn. (WTNH) — October is breast cancer awareness month. This week, News 8 is introducing a warrior who, despite living with breast cancer, has still found time and courage to fundraise for the cause during the pandemic.
“I’ll never forget the phone call; the radiologist called me,” said Kara Rizzardi, of Trumbull.
A diagnosis no one wants to hear.
“It usually spreads to the organs and the bone. For me, it did it had spread from the breast to the node.”
In December 2017 at 34, Rizzardi, a mom of two young girls, was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer.
“I remember turning to my husband and saying, ‘My life is over. Our life is over…’There is no cure for this disease, this is lifelong.”
Today, Rizzardi’s cancer is under control, but she said until there’s a cure, she will never be a breast cancer survivor or in remission. However, she is thriving and surviving.
“I just wish we could find a cure for this disease,” she said.
Her husband, Greg, has never missed an appointment.
“I can’t imagine, I have the easy job just being there,” he said.
But like so many other things, COVID changed that. For the last several months, she has been forced to go alone.
But it was during her most recent infusion Rizzard thought…“What can we do? What can we do?”
So, she and Greg decided to fundraise by designing and selling apparel with a fall metastatic breast cancer theme.
“What we’re trying to do is raise money and fundraise from home for the Cancer Couch Foundation,” said Rizzardi.
It’s a nonprofit organization that puts 100% of its donations toward metastatic breast cancer research.
Many people right now are fighting the same fight as Rizzardi.
“I call it a ticking time bomb in my body.”
And many families feel like Greg.
“I can’t even imagine what we would do without her.”
Although we continue to live through this pandemic, it’s important to listen closely to Rizzardi’s message.
“To anyone out there who has not gone to doctor’s appointments or has put them off because of COVID, please, if you need to see your doctor, if you need a physical or a mammogram, please go.”
Apparel and support the Cancer Couch Foundation can be found online.
The campaign ends on Saturday, Oct. 24.