Cancer support expo returns Friday


Birmingham television news anchor Brenda Ladun will be the keynote speaker at the second annual Wings of Hope Cancer Support Expo on Friday.

Ladun's talk will kick off the event, which will be held at Jasper Civic Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

Ladun was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2001. After being in remission for several years, the cancer returned in 2007.  

Ladun has written three books about her cancer journey and hosts an annual Conquer Cancer Run.

The Wings of Hope Cancer Support Expo is a free event hosted by Capstone Rural Health Center and Forge Breast Cancer Survivor Center in Birmingham. Last year's inaugural event drew over 100 attendees, and more are expected this year.  

The day will include presentations by several speakers, and approximately 30 vendors will be on hand to share information with guests. Guests are invited to stay for the day but can come and go as their schedule allows.

"It's a good place to come if you need resources, whether you're a caregiver, a patient or someone who has had cancer in the past," said Shannon Williamson, outreach and enrollment coordinator at Capstone.

Doors will open at 9 a.m. A continental breakfast will be served.

The first 100 people to register will receive a gift bag. 

Ladun will speak at 10:05 a.m. She will be followed by Dr. Michael Garcia of Clearview Cancer Institute, who will speak on the importance of prevention and early detection. 

Lunch will begin at 11:30 a.m. and will coincide with a panel discussion by Garcia, Dr. Stanford, Kimberly Williams of the American Cancer Society, social worker Ginny Roberts, Caroline McClain of Forge and Capstone executive director David Jones.

Members of the Breast Cancer Support Group of Walker County will give a brief presentation at the end of lunch.

There will be a 15-minute Zumba break before the presentations resume. 

Williams will discuss financial resources, particularly for cancer patients who are uninsured, at 12:30 p.m. Roberts will speak on grief at 1 p.m. 

The day will conclude with a routine by comedienne and cancer survivor Carla Youngblood, who performed at the inaugural expo last year.