Buddy Check: Kelly’s Story


HAZLE TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) It’s a story like no other we’ve seen in our Buddy Check.
    A mother, a daughter and a whole lot of love and support to battle breast cancer.
    Our Jasmine Brooks reports from Hazle Township.

They say “God only gives us what we can handle”, but how about the idea of having breast cancer just weeks before you’re baby is due?
    How do you face that?

“I would have never thought that I had breast cancer. We had no history of it in our entire family.” Said Kelly Valovich, Breast Cancer Survivor

    Doctors told Kelly Valovich a lump on her breast was most likely just a milk duct…after all, she was pregnant.
    Kelly swept the thought under the carpet for more than two-years, keeping busy raising her two-sons.
    But eventually.  “Something made my hand go to that spot again.”

    It was that self breast exam that would change Kelly’s life forever.
“It feels like a rock under your skin. So like you know the difference in the lump. So that’s how you know it is different. So i had gone for the ultrasound and i knew it wasn’t a cyst.”said Kelly

    The mom of two was diagnosed with breast cancer and her fight wasn’t easy..

“Our playroom was on the main floor. I would close the door, they were two and three, and I would put pop tarts and juice and I would lay on the couch.”


“I would come here and say get up, get moving. I guess I’m old school where you just..oh yeah, old school….” said Margaret Galada, a Breast Cancer Survivor

    Kelly’s mom Margaret helped take care of the boys until her daughter was well again.
    But 5 years after Kelly was diagnosed. the unthinkable happened.

 “The more testing they did, the more i knew it wasn’t a good prognosis.” said Margaret

    What started as a routine mammogram, ultimately ended with Margaret’s breast cancer diagnosis.

“It was very hard. I knew what to expect, but it was still really hard.” added Margaret

    But there’s a happy ending to their journey and a life filled with a lot of energy!
    Today Kelly and Margaret are heathly…..and eager to share their advice with others.

Kelly has this advice “Cancer isn’t a death sentence. If you find something, get it taken care of immediately.” 

And this our reminder to you call your Buddy to Remind them to do a Breast Self Exam- it is a call that could save life.

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About Buddy Check

Each month, we feature people and events in the fight against Breast Cancer and other devastating cancers. We share inspiring stories of survival from people throughout Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania in hopes it will help others live a healthy, happy life.

Gallery of Hope

Awareness, screenings, and early detection are the keys in the fight against breast cancer. If detected early, the five-year survival rate for localized breast cancer is 97%. That’s why Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania created the Gallery of Hope.

Since 2000, the Gallery of Hope has been sharing the stories of breast cancer survivors from throughout northeastern and north central Pennsylvania . . . women and men whose experiences help us educate others.

If you know someone who's battled breast cancer and been an inspiration to others, nominate them for this year’s Gallery of Hope by clicking on the box below. And help us spread the word by displaying the traveling Gallery at your facility or event. Simply click on the "Request" link below.

Nominate a survivor from your community.

Learn More


October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. While most people are aware of breast cancer, many forget to take the steps to have a plan to detect the disease in its early stages and encourage others to do the same. We have made a lot of progress but still have a long way to go and need your help!

Learn more at www.nationalbreastcancer.org.


The National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM) is a collaboration of national public service organizations, professional medical associations, and government agencies working together to promote breast cancer awareness, share information on the disease, and provide greater access to services.

Since its inception more than 25 years ago, NBCAM has been at the forefront of promoting awareness of breast cancer issues and has evolved along with the national dialogue on breast cancer. NBCAM recognizes that, although many great strides have been made in breast cancer awareness and treatment, there remains much to be accomplished. Today, we remain dedicated to educating and empowering women to take charge of their own breast health.

Learn More at www.nbcam.org.

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