HOLBROOK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — More than a decade ago, a Long Island woman made the commitment to “walk the walk” until breast cancer was no more.
Jane Altman goes through two pairs of sneakers every year — not from casual strolls around her Holbrook neighborhood but from a weekend-long charity walk to put an end to breast cancer, reports CBS2’s Mary Calvi.
“I get blisters, I get shin splints, I get exhausted, but it’s not chemo and it’s not radiation and I’m not losing my hair,” she said.
For the last 11 years, Altman has participated in the two-day long AVON 39 Walk in Manhattan. But she didn’t want her mission to end after it was cancelled, deciding to sign up for a more grueling task: the Susan G. Komen three-day, 60-mile walk in Philadelphia.
“Average 20 miles a day,” says Altman. “There is a break. You sleep at night. This year we’ll tent.”
The walk is just a few weeks away. Altman plans on doing it by herself but will carry a hat with ribbons, each ribbon representing someone she knows who has been diagnosed with breast cancer.
“It’s not fair, it’s indiscriminate and patients are getting younger and younger,” she says.
Click here for more information on the walk and how to get involved
According to the Susan G. Komen organization, more than 260,000 women and 2,500 men in the U.S. are expected to be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer this year.
In 2007, Jane’s mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. A year before, her best friend received similar news.
“I had a single mastectomy, a year of chemotherapy and radiation for 33 treatments,” said cancer survivor Patty Spitzler.
Today, Altman and Spitzler are both survivors, saying now its Altman who is the fighter.
“I don’t know how she does it, to be honest with you,” says Spitzler. “It’s a big deal.”
A big deal for a big purpose. Altman has raised more than $35,000 to help find a cure for breast cancer.