Effort helps cancer program

By ARTHUR CLEVELAND

The Leader-Herald

CAROGA – A Caroga Lake cancer survivor’s motorcycle run raised more than $2,000 for a cancer-screening program.

Nanette Gallagher, founder and president of Caroga Cares About Cancer, said the money raised in the May 31 local motorcycle run will go to the Cancer Services Program of Fulton, Montgomery and Schenectady Counties.

About 100 riders participated. The event raises money via signup fees and admission to a party after the ride.

Gallagher said she was first diagnosed in 2005 with invasive lobular carcinoma, a type of breast cancer, while she was living in Rhode Island. A?screening program in that state found the cancer.

“If they find the cancer and you qualify, you can get health benefits through the state and help you get the treatments,” Gallagher said.

“This free screening program saved my life and has saved the lives of many, many people since its inception,” she said in an email. “I was able to fight my cancer without the added stress of worrying about any medical bills that we couldn’t afford to pay.”

After nine months of treatment, Gallagher and her husband moved to Caroga Lake. She said she fell in love with the area.

“We have made some great friends and care a lot about them. While getting to know the people here, we also found that quite a few of them were in dire situations with little or no insurance and facing a possible diagnosis themselves, or they already had had cancer too,” Gallagher said in the email.

Gallagher started Caroga Cares About Cancer in 2010 to support the screening program.

“I am always aware of how lucky I am to have this program to help me and anyone else out there who needs it. I want to make sure it stays part of our society, as there are so many out there who need it and many more who don’t even know they qualify for the benefits,” Gallagher said in the email.

This year’s motorcycle run, the third so far, broke the record for how much the charity has raised.

Gallagher said the organization also raises money by selling T-shirts through the group’s Caroga Cares About Cancer Facebook page.