Penny McConnell

Penny McConnell

I'm Penny and I'm walking for my wonderful and inspirational daughter, Maree.

Maree was diagnosed with breast cancer in July this year, a few days after her 31st birthday, and one week after her annual MRI detected a small lesion in her left breast. She had a double mastectomy a few weeks later and is now preparing for the next treatment steps.

I passed on the BRCA2 gene, oblivious to it before she was born, as little was known about it when I was diagnosed with breast cancer at 34, and again at 43. Maree is having to make significantly tougher choices than I ever had to and is far more aware of all the ramifications of her decisions.

Thankfully, she has a remarkable, supportive husband, and incredible workmates, friends and family who have gone above and beyond to support her. It's been inspiring watching her deal with the diagnosis in such a positive and fearless manner.

We will also be walking for my mother, who died of breast cancer aged 47, and my grandmother, who died aged 61. It is easy to forget how precious it is to be alive, but we are honoured to support those who have fought, are fighting, or are yet to fight breast cancer. We are the "Knackered Knockers", parts of us may be missing, but our spirit is alive and well!

I am too positive to be doubtful, too optimistic to be fearful, and too determined to be defeated.

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