Cancer Survivor Is Running Through Life
Michelle Juehring will likely be answering dozens of questions this week as she transitions into the role of director of the Quad-City Times Bix 7, one of the premier road races in the country.
Some questions will likely be routine, others more complex. There are hundreds of details that come with the position. But she’s got this.
She assumes the position having survived breast cancer. None of the questions or details of the Quad-City Times Bix 7 will be packed with as much emotion or as much uncertainty as the question she was asked by her then two-year-old son, Dane, in 2006.
Only from the mouth of a 2-year-old: “Why is mommy’s head shiny?’’
Dane Juehring, approaching his third birthday, posed the question many women can understand. Mommy’s head was shiny because she lost her hair during breast cancer treatment.
Treatment Close to Home
At the time, Michelle Juehring was a 38-year-old wife to Dave and mother of two – the inquisitive Dane and Shelby, 7 months old at the time – and a full-time employee of the Quad-City Times. She already had plenty going on. She didn’t have extra time for a diagnosis of stage 3 breast cancer.
She had a diagnosis and treatment plan she received from Genesis but sought a second opinion from the Mayo Clinic.
“I’m originally from Wisconsin. When you live in Wisconsin, the Mayo Clinic is where you go when you have cancer,’’ she explained. “The people at the Mayo Clinic told me Genesis was suggesting exactly what they would do for me at the Mayo Clinic. They said I might as well be treated at home.’’
Staff of the Genesis Cancer Care Institute and the Kenneth H. McKay Center for Breast Health provided treatment, support and information throughout Juehring’s journey. She had surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and reconstructive surgery all at Genesis.
“I would advise anyone facing a cancer diagnosis to take advantage of what is available right here whenever possible,’’ said Michelle Juehring. “Not only did I receive a high quality of care, but I received compassionate care across the board.
“When you are first diagnosed, you think about where the best care is. But what you need might be available in your own community.
“I had so much going with on two young children and work but I had great care and great support. I had a supportive husband (Dave) who walked every step with me.’’
Dane, who asked the great question, is now 16. Shelby, who would pull out clumps of mom’s hair during treatment, is 14.
More cancer patients in the region like Michelle will be able to receive their care locally at Genesis.
Expanded Cancer Services Near You
In a significant expansion of close-to-home comprehensive cancer services, medical oncologists Stewart Garneau, M.D., Michael Porubcin, M.D., and David Spector, M.D., Ph.D., joined Genesis Health Group (GHG) at the start of 2019.
Dr. Garneau comes to GHG after more than 20 years of independent practice in Moline. Drs. Porubcin and Spector join Genesis from Medical Arts Associates, Ltd., in Moline. All three doctors have relocated to the Genesis Cancer Care Institute, located at Genesis Medical Center, West Central Park.
Cancer diagnosis, treatment and support is also be available to patients at Genesis Medical Center, Silvis.
The Patient at the Center
At the center of that care team will be patients who, like Michelle Juehring, have other commitments as they fight cancer.
“At every step I felt like my opinion mattered and I was empowered to be part of my own treatment plan,’’ said Juehring. “I felt informed all along the way about what my options were.’’
Juehring’s cancer journey may have started with a single step; a diagnosis, but has continued with a run through life. She is a distance runner herself and even during cancer treatments she was in the field for the Quad-City Times Bix 7 and ran a marathon that fall. To date, she has run 23 marathons and completed an Ironman triathlon.
Running is now her career. She essentially has taken over leadership and organization of the Quad-City Times Bix 7 as Ed Froehlich retires from the position he has held 40 years.
The Quad-City Times Bix 7 has long been a premier summer event in the region. The festivities will be held this week with race time at 8 a.m. on Saturday. The Arconic Jr. Bix will be held Friday night and the Bix Sprints sponsored by Genesis will be held Thursday.
Learn More About the Genesis Cancer Care Institute
To learn more, call 563-421-1900 or contact us online.