My wife was diagnosed with breast cancer this year. This is a testament to the courage she has displayed over the last several months.

My wife is just one of over 2.5 million breast cancer survivors. While I see how brave she is, there are thousands of women just like her. If you need inspiration, just spend a day with the cancer survivors associated with Dragon Boat Charleston.

From the time she got the call to now, Debbie has been unbelievably positive. To this day, her two brothers still havenít called her, she couldnít talk to her mom about it, and she was still the most positive person to be around.

She chose to have a double mastectomy, and the chemo was rough. She lost her hair, and I had to open her drinks for her, for fear of her fingernails coming off. We both almost passed out when I took out her pain tubes. Through this she never got down. She never let this be a reason to slow down. She kept going with a smile on her face.

She and I celebrated our 25th anniversary this year. Weíll appreciate each day and year a little more now (with more hair, at least for her).

She had so many friends and family there for her. It reminds you of the kindness in people.

Debbie was the one that went through hell, and made it easy on the rest of us. She is truly an inspiration. Iím looking forward to another 25 years with her.

Fred Dutcher

Mount Pleasant