Thursday, October 17, 2013


I was introduced to Josh a few months ago.  He is a young man with a BRCA mutation.  And a mom who is living with metastatic disease.  I asked him if he'd be willing to share his story.  Last night, I received this in an email.  There are many ways we can each make a difference.  Josh is making a difference in his community.  I'm honored to share his message here.

The Marathon Of Metastatic Breast Cancer

My Name is Josh Newby- Harpole.  My mother, Theresa who is 47 years old, has been living with Metastatic Breast Cancer for 3 ½ years.  She was originally diagnosed with Stage 0 Breast Cancer in 2006. We are both BRCA II positive and we currently reside in the St. Louis Area.

Today I am writing this blog from my mother’s hospital room in Chicago. She was in town to cheer me on as I ran the Chicago Marathon. Unfortunately she was not well enough to come out. Today we learned that her nausea and headaches are a result of the disease spreading to her brain. She already has bone and liver metastases and just two days prior she was relaxing on the beach. Unfortunately this is the reality for so many women with metastatic breast cancer, a never-ending marathon of highs and lows.

I won’t lie.  This news sucks but the only option is to move forward and hope the next treatment will work and my mom can have a good quality of life. But as I mentioned before, she has been dealing with this for 3 ½ years and she is tired of being poked and prodded.

On a more positive note this journey has lead my mother and I to start the THERESA HARPOLE FOUNDATION FOR METASTATIC BREAST CANCER in February of this year –With a vision to help raise funds for Metastatic Research.  We have raised over $25,000 dollars for research at Siteman Cancer Center in St. Louis.

We are hosting an exclusive screening of Decoding Annie Parker on Oct 24th in St. Louis & we are currently in the planning stages for 2014. You can learn more about our Foundation at

I cannot stress how important it is support metastatic research. Less than 5% of non-pharma money goes to funding metastatic research with an estimated 30% of early stage breast cancer becoming metastatic.

Everyone loves the pink ribbon and wants to fund prevention but the reality is that in order to really make a difference we need to fund research. The support programs that exist for metastatic patients are wonderful but if we don’t find better treatment options the women and men who are truly suffering, they won’t be here to benefit from them.

I understand this is a conversation that we are not ready to have but the reality is if we don’t do something women and men are going to continue to suffer.

Changing the Odds and treating each day as a gift,



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  1. I'm so impressed with Josh and his family's foundation. It takes a lot of strength to be so giving and proactive during the challenges they are facing. Josh, I wish you and your mom load of love, healing and strength together. Thanks for sharing your space with Josh, Anne Marie. ~Catherine

  2. dear Josh,

    your story is so inspiring and brings with it incredible hope that the efforts and contributions you have made in your mom's name will, indeed, change the landscape of metastatic breast cancer. please let you dear mother know that I am wishing her strength, comfort and healing in her latest chapter of this devastating disease. I write this with tears streaming down my face, thinking of how proud and fortunate you and your mother are to have each other. we need stories like yours to remind us that there IS hope, there IS power in numbers, but there is also tremendous potential and hope that can be fulfilled with the determination and commitment like what you and your mom have demonstrated. I send you my wishes for continued success, and for strength and healing for you as you are there for your mom with such big hope, love and devotion to her care.

    and thank you to Anne Marie for sharing this incredibly touching and inspirational story about Josh and Theresa. I hope you will keep us posted on their progress.

    much love and light,

    Karen, TC


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