Northbrook women spearhead Komen walk
Myrna (left) and Lauran Bromley pose with a truck full of supplies for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day Walk which begins at Northbrook Court Friday. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
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Updated: September 10, 2012 12:42PM
Two determined Northbrook women have been working out for six months to participate in the 2012 Susan G. Komen Chicago 3-Day, 60-mile walk.
Lauran and Myrna Bromley are business partners who provide coin-operated amusement machines internationally for businesses like Chuck E. Cheese.
But this weekend, they will be pacing pavement on very sore, but fit feet to raise money to fight breast cancer.
At 6:30 a.m. Friday they will be at Komen’s opening ceremony at Northbrook Court Shopping Center, 2171 Northbrook Court.
They will step off shortly afterward with their group to wind through Northfield, Glenview, Des Plaines and Mount Prospect.
Then, the participants in the group will continue to Chicago’s Lincoln Park, then on to Soldier Field, where the event ends Sunday with a victory parade.
Each person had to raise $2,300 to take the challenge. Their goal is to raise awareness of breast cancer and funds to fight it.
Last January, news reports indicated that the Komen Foundation had decided to stop funding breast-screening services provided by Planned Parenthood, because Planned Parenthood had become the target of a congressional investigation at the urging of anti-abortion activists.
However, after three days of taking the fallout from its action, Komen changed its mind and decided to continue funding Planned Parenthood. That, in turn, provoked a counter-reaction from pro-choice Komen supporters.
“The Planned Parenthood issue has had an impact on participation, but Susan G. Komen 3-Day supporters won’t let a few weeks of controversy overshadow a generation of positive progress,” said Norm Bowling, project manager for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day event.
“We welcome any participation numbers, because every dollar raised makes a difference in our efforts to end breast cancer forever. One walker put it best when she stated: ‘It may be a smaller 3-Day community this year, but it’s definitely a closer 3-Day community’.”
And both of the Northbrook women steadfastly support the Komen organization, noting that because of it, success in treating breast cancer is now 90 percent.
Lauran, who is about to take this walk for the second time, became a Susan G. Komen supporter after she was diagnosed with a very early form of breast cancer 10 years ago.
Because she underwent a lumpectomy and radiation treatment, she has lived cancer free ever since.
“Last year, at mile 18, I thought I just couldn’t go any further. I could have gotten into a van and gone to the next station, but I was too stubborn to do that,” Lauran said.
“When I thought I couldn’t walk another foot, I saw a person with a bandage on her arm because her lymph nodes were removed and a bald person who was fighting for her life, and I got the energy to put another step in front of me.”
Myrna, who said she is not one to exercise — and would prefer to simply donate to the cause — said she could not pass up the walk this year because of Lauran’s commitment to the effort.
“When last year’s walk was over, Lauran and her friends were crying, laughing and were so proud of themselves, I just had to do it,” she added.
But even their training program should have earned the participants survival points. They were asked to walk three miles one day, then four the next, with the numbers increasing as the event became closer.
Last week, they were supposed to walk four miles on Tuesday, five on Thursday, 18 on Saturday and 10 on Sunday, Lauran said.
“We couldn’t do exactly that, but we did do 10 miles back to back. We wanted to make sure that five miles is nothing to us when we start this event,” she added.
Even when the participants weren’t walking, they were performing other exercises, like cycling or using an elliptical trainer during the last several months.
Myrna said she already knew she was really going to “really, really hurt” by Sunday, but that she was ready.
According to the Foundation, 75 percent of the net proceeds raised by the Komen 3-Day event will help support national research and large public health outreach programs.
The remaining 25 percent will support local community and affiliate outreach programs.
For more information or to donate, visit www.The3Day.org or call 800-996-3DAY.