Real Life

Stage IV cancer sufferer wins beauty pageant

Sarah White feared she would slip into depression if she didn't do something positive with her diagnosis.
Mrs West Virginia Sarah White

Mrs West Virginia Sarah White

A woman with Stage IV breast cancer has won a beauty pageant, after realising all the things she wanted to do following her cancer diagnosis.

“When I heard ‘stage IV, it’s in your lungs,’ I immediately started thinking, ‘I’ve got to do the things I’ve always wanted to do,’ ” 36-year-old Sarah White told PEOPLE magazine.

The mum-of-two, who had already gone through a double mastectomy and reconstruction before the cancer returned in her chest wall, spine and lungs, was worried she would get depressed and give up.

It was a friend of hers who saw this and decided she needed something to get up and live for. She suggested a beauty pageant.

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She competed in the Miss All Star United States Pageant in April, winning the title or Miss West Virginia.

Sarah says she was in complete shock at her win, but was glad she had the focus on the competition to take her mind off her illness.

“It was just something to get me out of the funk. But something good has obviously come out of it.”

As winner, Sarah is now spending her year working with her community in West Virginia, to spread the word about early cancer detection. She will also volunteer with the American Cancer Society’s “Look Good Feel Better” programme.

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