Family celebrates bittersweet Mother's Day

CHAPEL HILL One Triangle family is deeply missing a mother of two and wife of 37 years, Mary Anne Long, who in March lost her long battle with cancer.

"It's hard, but we're so tight, the girls take good care of me," Husband Rodney Long said.

Long's girls he refers to is the couple's two daughters, Corie and Macy.

"We'll make it, but we miss her," Corie said.

Corie says her mother never complained while undergoing chemo, surgery, and pretty much constant pain during the 3-and-a-half years of stage four colon cancer.

"Probably the hardest that she endured the whole time was when she lost her hair," Rodney said. "It was so hard for her."

But out of that pain, the family's search of finding a way to celebrate her life was born --The Mary Anne Long Brighter Image Boutique-- coming soon to UNC's new Lineberger Cancer Center.

Her family says Long was a woman who loved --among many things-- fashion and her Carolina Tar Heels.

"During her treatments we would see so many people, young and old, she always wanted to do something to help people," Rodney said. "Hair, make-up, skin care, nutrition, our hope is after they're there."

"It fit my mom so perfectly, she could make other women feel good about themselves," Corie said.

Her family says it helps knowing before she died, she was proud of the boutique and having her name on the wall of her beloved Carolina. But they say it doesn't make Mother's Day any easier.

"Hang on tight … if your mom is still around," Corie said.

"I like that saying, live everyday like it's your last, it's a good one," Rodney added.

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