Can you make a difference?

I spent Wednesday in Smithville providing crisis response because Julia Bargman suddenly passed away. She was the middle school counselor who fought breast cancer, received numerous awards for inspiring youth, coached track and raised two boys. Julia first battled breast cancer 14 years ago. The breast cancer returned four years ago, and two years ago she learned that she had bone and liver cancer. She passed in her sleep Monday night. I have attached an article so you can see how loved this woman was, how she took a personal tragedy and inspired others. May we all learn from her.

“October is BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, and there are many stories of hope and inspiration in the Kansas City area from those who have survived breast cancer. In Smithville, Missouri, Julia Bargman is one of those people who radiate such hope across the area. Julia is a counselor and one of the cross country coaches in the Smithville school district (along with head coach Eric Klingensmith who is also a cancer survivor and former Marine Iraqi veteran).

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, the Smithville boys and girls cross country team ran all the way from St. Joseph, Missouri to Smithville, Missouri. In The Kansas City Star article, Students Run 40 Miles for Mammograms, we learn that the run was part of the Pink Ribbon Game and Run to raise funds for mammograms for women who cannot afford them.

At half-time of the Smithville High School football game last Friday, where there was a sea of pink everywhere you looked, the cross country team made its entrance on the field and breast cancer survivors lined up to greet them.

Coach Bargman became emotional when she watched as her team entered the stadium. She hugged and thanked each of them for their support.  Contributions for the cause brought over $1,600 in pledges alone. The Smithville Heraldquoted Julia, in the article, Producing pink power, on October 13, 2010 by Nancy Hull Rigdon, as saying, “It’s amazing and overwhelming to see that kind of support.”

Fellow Smithville Counselor, Sandy Henshaw, said of Julia, “Julia is one of the strongest and most courageous people I have ever met. She has never lost hope and is so inspiring to us all, even on her most trying days. She is a dear friend. Everyone loves Julia.”

The whole community would tell you that Julia Bargman is like an ‘ever-ready’ battery that just keeps on going and inspiring others. During this BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, our prayers and support go to ALL the cancer survivors and we are so thankful for their much needed and appreciated inspiration. God bless them all.”

If this woman could make a difference- why can’t each of us?

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