|With Tera, August 2013|
On August 1, when I submitted the final manuscript for Inevitable Collision to Mary Ann Liebert's publishing team, I knew that this story was far from over and there was potential for a sequel to begin as early as 2015. However, I had no idea how quickly Tera's experience with cancer would change in less than one month since writing The End, where my words "Thank God she's been in remission for over twenty years...." I wrote in confidence and prayed that Tera would never have to battle this terrible disease again.
Sadly, I'm announcing today that we received news last Wednesday that Tera has been diagnosed with a new type of cancer called Invasive Ductal Carcinoma -- the most common type of breast cancer with more than 180,000 new cases in the U.S. each year. Tera my only sister - my hero, is the 41-year-old mother of three handsome and athletic sons, Cameron, Noah and Elliot. She adores her husband David, her family and friends, and our small community nestled in south Alabama more than any other person I know. Tera is a passionate elementary school teacher and works tirelessly to help her second-grade students learn and grow each day.
Although I will never be able to express what an inspiration Tera is to my family and me, I hope that I can express to you all reading today how lucky I am to have a sister who is strong, funny, happy, and who keeps us dancing through life's biggest challenges. In the weeks and months ahead, please keep Tera and our entire family in your thoughts and prayers that her new journey toward cure will be another amazing experience of healing and complete remission. Tera's chances of beating this new cancer are much, much higher than her diagnosis of Rhabdomyosarcoma in 1988, and for those of you who know my sis, you know that Tera is a fighter and will be a very proactive and compliant patient.
With Inevitable Collision officially launching Wednesday (100% of book proceeds funding FDA-compliant stem cell research) my goals for educating our world on the importance and promise of stem cell research are raised even higher. For Tera and millions of others battling disease and disability, this mission is too important and a MUST! Your support and prayers are greatly appreciated.
Much love, Tory!