Inspiring in teal - One woman’s commitment to raising awareness about ovarian cancer

Lyne Shackleton wearing teal - the ovarian cancer colour.

Lyne wearing teal for ovarian cancer.

The wind pushes hard against her face making every step that much harder. She’s been walking for a few hours, but by the time the sun reaches it’s highest point, the wind dies down and a gentle breeze takes its place. The warmth of the air caresses her cheeks. She smiles, takes a deep breath and keeps on walking. 

Not everyone can undertake such a journey on their own. But for Lyne Shackleton, it’s what’s important. 

Lyne lost her mother to ovarian cancer three years ago. Since then, she’s walked close to 400km to bring attention to the cause. 

Ovarian cancer, also known as the ‘silent killer', is said to be the most fatal of all women cancers. That’s because there are no screening tests for ovarian cancer and as a result, it’s often diagnosed at a later stage. To make matters worse, symptoms of ovarian cancer – like a stomachache or a fever – are not specific enough for women to consider seeing a doctor. 
 
It’s at that point that Lyne realized she wanted other women to know about ovarian cancer. She wanted other women to have the information her mother didn’t have.
 
In addition to volunteering with Ovarian Cancer Canada, Lyne began some information sessions at various Curve Fitness locations in and around Ottawa. While these sessions are extremely important to ensure more women are knowledgeable about the cancer, it’s not an easy task. 

There are endless campaigns to raise awareness about cancer, from breast cancer, to lung cancer to prostate cancer, and some are more successful than others in getting the attention of the larger public. 

The problem is that women and men are becoming more and more turned off at the idea of ‘another pamphlet’ or ‘another disease to think about’. 

The truth is, we all want to believe that it’s not for us or it won’t affect us. Maybe if we don’t think about it, it won’t happen. Maybe. I certainly hope it won’t. But for the person it does affect, and for their family and friends, that information is critical. 

Lyne will be the first to tell you that had she or her mom known about ovarian cancer, things could have been different. It’s difficult to speculate after the fact, but there’s no question that being aware gives you a head a start. 

That’s why she wants to make sure others know. 

If you live in the Ottawa area, Lyne has been hard at work organizing a very special event in support of Ovarian Cancer Canada on Saturday, May 31st. The event is taking place at the beautiful Station Quatre Saisons in Hammond (east of Ottawa) from 6 to 10pm and it includes a BBQ dinner and concert (I am extremely grateful to be a part of this event!). Children prices and concert-only options are also available.

Proceeds from the event will go to ovarian cancer research. For more information, see the Facebook event

Please also take a second to visit the Ovarian Cancer Canada website and read up on ovarian cancer. 

Lyne Shackleton walking in memory of her mom.
Lyne Shackleton walking in memory of her mom.

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