DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- For LA Cuttler, news of receiving a devastating breast cancer diagnosis happened too fast. She received a phone call from her medical provider.
"I just remember saying to the other person on the other end, 'wait, hold up.' You want to schedule me, but you just told me I have breast cancer. I have to absorb that. I remember dropping to the floor and crying," said Cuttler.
She began her journey of chemotherapy and hair loss soon followed.
"I put my hands through my hair and I just remember them falling on the ground and picking the up saying I'm not going to lose anymore hair," she said.
She was a newcomer to North Carolina who moved from Pittsburgh. She didn't have a support system at the time, but joined Sisters Network Triangle NC several years later to support other women like her.
According to the American Cancer Society says more Black women die from breast cancer than any other cancer. In fact, Black women are 40 percent more likely to die from breast cancer than white women. About a third of Black women report experiencing racial discrimination at a health provider visit.
This is why organizers of Sisters Network Triangle NC work year round to raise awareness by holding outreach programs, fundraisers for financial assistance, support and sometimes a hug.
"Early detection helps the longevity of a breast cancer survivor," said Portia Hedgepeth, president of the organization. "Our ears and arms are open to comfort you as you go through."
Cuttler is almost a ten year breast cancer survivor, who uses her experience to support others who are diagnosed.
"I wish I would have known of the organization then," she said. "I need someone to say hey, we got you."
The Sisters Network Triangle NC is holding a Gift for Life Block Walk Saturday, October 29, 2022 from 9am to 2pm in Raleigh at the Tarboro Road Community Center.