SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. -- A giant, inflatable colon was put up at Spokane Valley Mall Tuesday to raise awareness as part of National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.
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Organizers hoped the display would spark curiosity and encourage people to learn about the importance of screening for the cancer, which sometimes exhibits no clear warning signs.
Local cancer survivor Sandy Plummer did not have a family history and showed no symptoms of colon cancer - and she, in fact, planned to get a colonoscopy at age 50. But at just 48 years old, she was diagnosed with colon cancer.
In the eight years since Plummer’s diagnosis, the cancer came back twice. Today, however, her oncologist tells her if she is clear another year, they will consider her cured.
For the first time, Sandy decided to speak out publicly to raise awareness, saying it is so much easier to prevent the disease than to treat it.
"Even stage one colon cancer, you need surgery, and that's all, but surgery's hard,” said Plummer. “[It’s] obviously better than going through chemotherapy, but prevention - and it's so easy to prevent and now with everybody having insurance, nobody has an excuse not to go and do it because it is so simple."
Plummer planned to be at the Spokane Valley Mall Tuesday sharing her story. People would also be able to sign up for health insurance at the location.
The giant colon display was scheduled to move to the NorthTown mall Wednesday.