“Yesterday was awful,” said Mrs. Carrie Smeltzer after receiving chemotherapy treatment. A health teacher at Red Lion Area Senior High School and a continuing fighter of cancer, Mrs Smeltzer graduated from Red Lion in 2000 and has been teaching at the same school since 2005.
Mrs. Smeltzer was first diagnosed with breast cancer on December 20, 2011.
“I was angry, I had a baby six months before and was supposed to be happy but at 30 years old, here I was.”
Family and friends were speechless and heartbroken, however her husband had remained strong, supportive and “awesome.” She was declared “cancer-free” on May 30, 2012. Yet, there was still a problem.
Cancerous cells remained in her body. “The pain in my arm I got while teaching turned out to be cancer that had spread, which is a scary thought.”
Round two of her fight began on June 17, 2013. “I was angry but I knew I had to pick myself up and live with it,” she said.
Family and friends were still shocked. Smeltzer says she “does not want the cancer to hold her back” and she looks forward to teaching in the upcoming school year and sharing her story of bravery and victory.
Red Lion 2011 graduate Andrew Zeller and K-12 technology coach Mrs. Smith have been working hard to help out the Smeltzer family any way they can, and the money used toward the t-shirts goes to the family of four.
“I came up with the idea of the shirt the day that I found out her cancer was back,” said Zeller. “Little did she know I was serious and that I would eventually try selling them to everyone that she has been able to grace her presence with.”
It appears that Mrs. Smeltzer is not alone in this fight and she has a whole team to back her up for “round two”.