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Stories of Inspiration

Stories of survivors who've inspired us with their determination and hopeful spirit.

  • Alicia Mooty

    Alicia Mooty: A Journey of Resilience and Hope

    At 49, Alicia Mooty faced colon cancer in 2019. After successful treatment, she was hit with endometrial cancer in 2021. Multiple surgeries and complications followed, but Alicia's positive attitude and the support of her medical team helped her through. Genetic testing revealed Lynch Syndrome, prompting her sister to undergo preventive measures. Alicia is grateful for her family's support and the dedicated team at Texas Oncology. She continues to face her challenges head-on, determined to live life to the fullest.

    “As anxious as I was feeling for yet another diagnosis, I could just see the light at the end of this long tunnel,” Alicia said. “I knew I would make it there.”

    Alicia Mooty
    Breast Cancer, Colon Cancer
  • Leroy Carrion

    Leroy Carrion: A Detective's Battle Against Cancer and Crime, Inspiring Courage and Resilience

    Leroy Carrion, a seasoned detective with the San Antonio Police Department, dedicated his life to solving crimes and bringing justice to his beloved community. In June 2021, he encountered a daunting and different kind of challenge when he was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer. This unexpected diagnosis, for the robustly healthy 53-year-old, would test Leroy physically and emotionally. But like cracking a criminal case, he applied determination and mental fortitude to see his way through his cancer journey.

    “Things happen in life that is God’s way of sending you to the left or the right. So whichever way you are lead, you fight. You fight like hell,” Detective Carrion said.

    Leroy Carrion
    Colon Cancer
  • Anita Smith

    Anita Smith: Three-Time Cancer Survivor finds Positive Outlook after Challenging Years

    Anita Smith has overcome breast, lung, and colon cancer, as well as caring for her diabetic husband who died of COVID-19 and her mother. Throughout her journey, Anita maintained a positive attitude and focused on recovery. Anita is now a caregiver for her mother, but she prioritizes her own health. Her story is a reminder to take care of oneself.

    “There’s no time like the present to take care of yourself. Life just gives you all kinds of surprises,” Anita said. “Some days are better than others.”

    Anita Smith
    Breast Cancer, Colon Cancer, Lung Cancer
  • Sharon Beck

    Sharon Beck: A Lesson in Determination and Positivity

    Eighty-eight-year-old Sharon Beck, retired teacher and metastatic breast cancer patient, participated in a clinical trial for an investigational oral selective estrogen receptor degrader (SERD) and found success. Clinical trials provide access to leading-edge treatments, but older patients rarely choose to participate due to various factors. However, Sharon was willing to participate in a clinical trial. Her doctor, Dhatri Kodali, was amazed at her willingness to participate in the clinical trial and her incredible support system in her family. Sharon emphasizes the importance of research in cancer and clinical trials and would do it again if the opportunity presented itself.

    “It made sense that we were going to have to do something a little out of the ordinary since it’d spread throughout my body, but I was willing to do anything“

    Sharon Beck
    Breast Cancer
  • Veronica Laurel

    Veronica Laurel: Empowered Breast Cancer Survivor Chooses Her Path Forward

    Veronica Laurel's breast self-examination led to a Stage 2B invasive ductal carcinoma breast cancer diagnosis in January 2020. Despite facing the unknowns of cancer during the COVID-19 pandemic and losing weight as a result of a healthier lifestyle, Veronica opted for a simple mastectomy without breast reconstruction, used online communities for emotional support, and is now part of a growing community of women called “For The Breast of Us.”

    “I am still learning how to manage the change, but when confronted with a cancer diagnosis, it makes you realize how precious time is. I am cherishing every moment of that time.“

    Veronica Laurel
    Breast Cancer
  • Mike Flanagan

    Mike Flanagan: Acting Teacher’s Character Shines Through Following Colorectal Cancer Diagnosis

    Mike Flanagan had just landed a professorship in Houston to help shape young actors when he was diagnosed with rectal cancer. Most meaningful to Mike, was how the team at Texas Oncology designed his treatment schedule so he could stay in the classroom and live his life at home too. With his cancer fight ongoing, Mike has a positive attitude and knows it is okay to not always be brave and strong.

    “ Colorectal cancer shouldn’t be a taboo subject. The more open and willing to talk about your experience you are, the more can be done for you, and the more you can do to process it.“

    Mike Flanagan
    Colon Cancer