Power of Pink Luncheon a success

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Memorial Health Systems of East Texas held their annual breast cancer awareness get-together.

"Power of Pink is a tremendous success.  It goes for such a worthwhile cause, helping indigent cancer patients right here at home to get treatment," says YANA OGLETREE, WHO ORGANIZED THIS EVENT.

It started out as a handful of women meeting where ever they could in a hospital room or hallway, but 15 years later, it's turned into a huge gathering of nearly 700 men and women.

"Each year it gets a little better and a little bigger," says Ogletree.

The message today from motivational speaker Sally Baskey was simple -- laugh.

"It was a great group.  I just think people were ready to laugh.  There is a lot of stress in this room, with the world and economy is under stress right now and I think humor is the message we all need to hear," says Baskey.

Ogletree says they wanted someone uplifting, so "Instead of coming in and hearing a clinical discussion or panelist, we have a motivational speaker that speaks to each of us. We all deal with issues in our life and we all need to be motivated.  I think she did just that."

Baskey says we all are having tough times right now and for those with cancer, it's even tougher.  But by laughing we can get through it.

"My father passed away from lung cancer so I have such respect and admiration for people that have fought this battle.  I just believe humor gets us through so much, it's so healing.  It's something we have the power to do every day and it's important for me to get that message out," says Baskey.

The Power of Pink is not only a worthwhile cause, but it's a reminder for everyone to take care of themselves.

"This is just a message to say don't put it off.  You have to take care of yourself and know the importance of you staying healthy as well if you are going to take care of the rest of your family," says Ogletree.

The Power of Pink organizers are already looking forward to next year.  The Civic Center has been booked for the event and Ogletree says they already have centerpieces picked out.