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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

American Cancer Society annual gala this weekend

The Garland County chapter of the American Cancer Society will hold its annual gala benefit this Saturday evening at The Regency in downtown Hot Springs. Co-chairs Amy Thomason of Arkansas Hospice and Lee Kathryn Frisby of Mercy Hospital have planned a fun night—dubbed “Summer in Hot Springs – Las Vegas Style”—filled with food and festivities to raise cancer awareness and honor this year’s honorary chairwoman, Dr. Brenda Ketcher.

Dr. Ketcher was diagnosed with breast cancer in August of 2012. Since then, with the support and expertise of Dr. Fred Divers and Genesis Cancer Center, she has undergone 3 surgeries, 4 weeks of chemotherapy, 33 radiation treatments and just two weeks ago, finished herceptin treatments. Her final surgery is scheduled for September 17th. “Because I had been through the diagnosis stage of cancer with so many patients, my initial reaction was not ‘Why Me?’ but rather, ‘Why Not Me?’” says Dr. Ketcher. One of her greatest supporters throughout life and particularly this battle is her sister, who told her that “a friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and when you’re not able to sing it, sings it for you.” “Through this battle, I’ve learned that I have an entire choir of people—friends, family, colleagues, patients and others—who have been praying for me and singing my heart’s song during recovery,” said Dr. Ketcher. “I never hit an emotional low during treatment because of all I learned through having cancer. It changed my life—and possibly saved it because it taught me not work 18 hours a day, and how to be a care recipient, not a caregiver all the time.”
When Dr. Ketcher realized she was going to beat cancer, she felt an affirmation of all the outpouring of strength and prayers from everyone in her life and the strength she got from Dr. Divers' honesty and positive input. “I have a new appreciation of caring for quality of life and adding time for play!”

So “play” is exactly what the ACS Gala Saturday evening will be all about! The event will feature delicious food by Belle Arti and the Porterhouse, a signature “Blue Suede Shoes Martini” sponsored by Dr. Manusha Kota, wall of wine and silent auction. Entertainment will be by Butch Dicus – The King of Hearts, as Elvis, and the return of live band, Kings of the Delta of Memphis, TN. Additional Las Vegas elements will be worked into the evening including show girls and photo opportunities with the “Rat Pack”. Summer in Hot Springs – Las Vegas style is presented by Genesis Cancer Center. Additional sponsors include Flamingo sponsor, Mercy Hospital; Cirque Du Soleil sponsor, Dr. David Pruitt; and Sands Sponsors, New Images Boutique, US Stations, Gentiva Home Health and The Sentinel Record.

For additional information about the American Cancer society and their research, projects and services, visit or call 1-800-227-2345.

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