Sheila Falls, long time Community Trust Bank employee and youth leader at Fundamentalist Missonary Baptist Church, was honored by her friends, supporters and fellow cancer survivors today in downtown LaFollette. The large tree on Central Avenue, decorated in pink bows and ribbons for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, was done so by her friends in her name.

Falls was first diagnosed with breast cancer 10 years ago. When she got her diagnosis she decided to found the group “Pink Pals”. In the years that followed Falls and other group members began making the pink bows that show up in town on businesses during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The group raised thousands of dollars selling these bows. They donated all proceeds to the Campbell County Cancer Society, which provides things like high nutritional value food supplements and gas money to get to appointments for people undergoing treatment for cancer.

Falls’ husband Kenny has stood proudly by her side during her treatment and she credits his strength for helping her in this battle. Unfortunately, her cancer returned in November 2019 after a number of years in remission, but Falls fights on with hope in her heart.

The group, made up of survivors of cancer and those who are friends and caregivers to those with cancer had one very important message they wanted to convey. That message was pay attention to your health. Do not wait to get tested if you suspect any potential problems and make sure you always get recommended tests even if you don’t suspect any problems. While October may be Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the group says that every month should be cancer awareness month for every form of the disease.

If you are worried about cost of testing or treatment there are options.

Thompson Cancer Survival Center’s Cancer Outreach Services program provides thousands of free or low-cost mammograms, cervical cancer screenings, prostate cancer screenings and cancer education services to people in Knox and 18 other counties throughout East Tennessee and Southern Appalachia.

You can contact Thompson Cancer Survival Center at (865) 331-1312.