Cancer Survivor 'Turns the Town Teal' to Raise Awareness

On Saturday, August 31, 2013,  Newburgh Enlarged City School District Physical Education Teacher Elissa Kenney, along with the help of her NECSD colleagues, family and friends, partnered with a nation-wide campaign, “Turn the Towns Teal”, to promote ovarian cancer awareness and its symptoms here in the Hudson Valley.

In May 2009, Kenney was diagnosed with ovarian cancer at Stage 1. According to Kenney, she was lucky enough to be diagnosed at such an early stage, as the symptoms for ovarian cancer mimic many other gastrointestinal disorders.

Since her diagnosis, she has worked diligently to promote the symptoms of the disease in her community. Recently, Kenney and her supporters joined together on a sunny summer afternoon to garnish NECSD buildings with teal ribbons and bows which represent the cause. She is hopeful that by raising awareness about the often silent disease, ovarian cancer cases will be found earlier with better results for patients.

“It is so important to raise awareness about this disease because many symptoms can be overlooked or mistaken for other illnesses,” Kenney explained. Symptoms include abdominal pain, lower back pain, need to urinate frequently, feeling full quickly after eating or constantly being very tired. Kenney stressed the importance of requesting further testing aside from annual visits if you have any of these symptoms.

In addition to the support from her colleagues, friends and family, Kenney expressed gratitude to Adams Fairacre Farms in Newburgh for tying the bows together for the event.  

Article by Kerry Butrick - media relations specialist for the NECSD