Nancy Alvarez’s cancer fight seen as call to action for breast cancer prevention

ORLANDO, Fla. — 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

Channel 9 anchor Nancy Alvarez shared her personal battle with cancer three weeks ago.

“During my annual mammogram a few weeks ago, a very small tumor was found in my right breast. It turned out to be cancer,” Alvarez said.

Watch: Nancy Alvarez reveals early stage breast cancer diagnosis, shares importance of making annual mammogram appointment

But it wasn’t only an announcement, it was also a call to action.

“If you’ve put off getting a mammogram because of the pandemic or because you’re busy or because you’re uninsured, please make that appointment today,” Alvarez said. “There are resources out there to help you.”

And her call to action was heard.

“When she was diagnosed, we were just blown away,” said Robin Maynard-Harris, founder of Libby’s Legacy Breast Cancer Foundation. “And when she made that announcement, our phones blew up. I mean blew up. We were not prepared.”

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In the middle of Channel 9′s interview with Maynard-Harris, a woman reached out for help getting a biopsy because she had seen Nancy’s announcement and social media posts.

Libby’s Legacy now needs extra volunteers after calls have tripled in recent weeks.

And most importantly, over that time, more than 100 underserved and uninsured women in Central Florida have been signed up for mammograms or breast health services.

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“We don’t turn anyone away. We’ve never turned anyone away,” she said.

That compassion, and the motivation to help save lives arises from Robin’s personal experience of losing her mother, Libby Maynard, who died of cancer in 2005.

While much has changed over the years, one thing has remained constant in the fight against breast cancer: the importance of early detection.

See the full report in the video above.