PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — All-in for their children, their families and for everything they do. That’s how you feel when you meet Lorelei McGlade. She has an energy that’s infectious and a tireless spirit that is helping Komen Philadelphia really make a difference.
“There I was watching, I had a bald head and my little scarf on, these people come down the steps and I thought, ‘I want to do that,’” McGlade said. “It was unbelievable the women that I saw, the families supporting them. It was something, let me tell you.”
McGlade had been diagnosed with stage two breast cancer just months earlier in 2005 after her doctor spotted something on a routine mammogram. The mass was too small to be felt in a self check.
“I wouldn’t have been able to find it, but based on what the x-rays and mammogram showed, she was able to find it and feel it,” she said.
McGlade now preaches the importance of a yearly mammogram to everyone she knows.
“I remind my friends. The best part is, my friends say, ‘I got my mammogram today.’ Don’t delay, we know too many people that have gotten it,” McGlade said.
After her experience at Race for the Cure, she knew she wanted to turn her experience into something positive.
But it wasn’t until a chance meeting with Komen Philadelphia CEO Elaine Grobman at her workplace that she found a way.
She started out collecting donations from friends and family, then yard sales with proceeds going to Komen. After that, an annual pink luncheon which raised thousands every year. But she knew she could do more. That’s when Survivors in Step was born.
“Survivors in Step is, breast cancer survivors are paired with professional dancers, and the dancers come from, last year from Philadanco,” McGlade explained. “It’s a friendly competition. We had judges, a dinner and everything. We picked a dance and did a dance and we raised over the last three years about $60,000 over the three years.”
In addition to being one of the biggest annual fundraisers for Susan G. Komen Philadelphia, it’s also a fun night out!
“One person said it was like going to a wedding, you have cocktails and you watch the show and then you get to dance. And Jim Donovan was the host for two years in a row. The ladies love him!” McGlade said.
She has a message for any woman that finds herself in the same position that she was in at the Race, all those years ago.
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