EUGENE, Ore. -- Carol Hachey said she was caught off guard in 2010 when a self-discovered lump brought her to the radiologist.
“I was healthy and athletic with no cancer in the family, I have to admit I never did self-checks,” said Hachey.
The mother of three says she was devastated by her breast cancer diagnosis.
“The kids were 5, 4 and 22 months old. My hair fell out within 7 days of my first chemo treatment. I don't remember Christmas that year, it was all a whirlwind,” Hachey said.
It was around that time Carol was introduced to the Young Survival Coalition; a group of women all diagnosed with cancer before 40.
"No matter how sick I got in the months following, throughout surgeries and recoveries and chemo therapy, I never missed a YSC meeting,” Hachey said.
Carol now has her own YSC group in Eugene. She says it’s open to anyone needing support.
“In the time I've been diagnosed, I've lost four friends to breast cancer,” said Hachey.
Having gone through the experience first hand, she has one piece of advice for all women.
“They need to do these exams, they need to be familiar with their bodies,” Carol said. “They can't take for granted that their healthy, they're young, they're athletic, and there's no history, because that's what I did.”