Story of Strength: Breast cancer survivor details courageous battle

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RONCEVERTE, WV (WVNS) — Cancer knows no boundaries and has no mercy. However, there are countless survivors.

Teena Porterfield is no stranger to a cancer diagnosis. She worked at Greenbrier Valley Medical Center for 30 years in the pathology department. Part of her daily job was sending out the reports with a patient’s diagnosis. She said she always had sympathy for the patients as they would soon hear the terrible news they have cancer.

Porterfield said cancer runs in the family genetics, so she was always up to date on her mammograms.
Until one day the mammogram showed troubling results and she was sending her own report which showed a cancer diagnosis.

“until that word is a part of your personal vocabulary, it really gets to you. I was very emotional,” Porterfield said.

Porterfield got the diagnosis in 2008. She had a lumpectomy and did not require chemotherapy, only radiation treatments. After surgery she took off work for only two weeks. The weeks following she continued radiation treatments, but did not miss any work. Instead, she pushed through. A testament to the true fighter she is.

“I would leave at 8 o’clock and go get my radiation come back around 8:30 to work my time out, go home. It did make me tired but I didn’t miss any work whatsoever with those radiation,” Porterfield said.

Porterfield said no matter the diagnosis, no one should go through it alone. She credits her faith and strong support system for helping her throughout the emotional journey.

“My faith in God. It’s what really got me through. My family, my church family, my friends. I mean I’ve been in this area 65 years, so I knew a lot of people and I had a lot of people praying,” Porterfield said.

Porterfield hopes her story serves as a reminder for all the women over the age of 40 to get their yearly mammograms. She said the quick and painless test could be the thing that saves your life from a killer disease.

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