Woman’s Battle with Breast Cancer Launches Foundation, Inspires Others
BELTON, Mo. — Laura Walsh Plunkett’s parents celebrate a life of generosity.
It’s been almost four years since her passing, and the end of three-year battle against breast cancer. The Excelsior Springs High School graduate took notes — page after page of thoughts from her struggle — as well as those from her young daughter and mother.
Three sets of perspectives were transcribed, and turned into “Flipped: One Cancer, Three Voices,” which chronicles Laura’s fight against cancer, and the anguish and hopefulness supplied by her loved ones. Laura’s mother, Suella Walsh, says the book is meant to provide hope for others.
Laura’s battle ended on Dec. 14, 2008. Her parents, Lawrence and Suella Walsh, remember her spirit and determination to overcome cancer.
“The idea was to go through the major events, and get our reactions as they happened,” Walsh said.
“When she was growing up, she would be determined to do things,” Lawrence Walsh said. “She would set her mind on that, and focus on it, and accomplish that.”
Laura and her immediate family — including two young children — were living in Belton, Mo., at the time of her passing. Her parents relocated there during her cancer treatment to assist in caring for the kids.
Laura’s mission continues through her Pass It On Foundation. Once per year, members are sent a reminder to get checked for breast cancer. Two sets of reminder cards are sent in each envelope — one for the recipient, and one to pass on to a friend.
“Early diagnosis saves lives,” Suella Walsh said. “She wanted to do this mailing.”
Information from Laura’s foundation reaches 2,000 women annually, reminding them about the importance of early detection when it comes to breast cancer. Her family says they’re proud of Laura — both of her accomplishments during life and the legacy that lives on.
“It’s so shocking when you find something like this,” Lawrence Walsh said. “I can do something about this.”
And she’s still doing them, even after her own time has run out.
All the proceeds from Laura’s book go back to the Pass It on Foundation.