Local cancer survivor works to inspire change in the fashion industry

Suzy Gibbons wants designers to offer more options for people who have had mastectomies
Published: Oct. 18, 2021 at 7:00 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - A local cancer survivor is working to help others who have gone through a mastectomy. Her focus is on fashion options, and she recently got some encouragement from one of the co-anchor’s of Good Morning America.

Suzy Gibbons has a long history of breast cancer in her family, so she says her own diagnosis came as no surprise.

“I noticed a lump on the left side and I just knew what it was.”

That was in May 2018. During her chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer, Suzy had difficulty breathing. Doctors discovered a small tumor on her lung. Suzy says that cancer was not connected to her breast cancer

“I was lucky they found it so early, lucky they could get it out. Within two months of diagnosis there was no chemotherapy , no radiation, no nothing.”

But because of her breast cancer, Suzy had a double mastectomy without implants or any kind of reconstruction. “Finding things to wear, to feel good about, that was difficult.”

This year Suzy started an open and honest conversation about those challenges. “I decided I could start to talk on social media, and create a space where women could talk about deciding to forgo reconstruction and still have nice things to wear.”

Her blog is called Suzytalk. “I love connecting with people and creating a community of support. It shocks me when someone I don’t know follows me.”

Her goal is to connect with fashion designers, manufacturers and retailers to talk about affordable options for people who have had mastectomies. “You can go spend a lot of money and find things but you can’t go and spend a little money and find things.”

Suzy was energized by a recent conversation she had with Robin Roberts, a co-anchor of Good Morning America and breast cancer survivor. “I had an opportunity to attend The Solheim Cup women’s forum and got to have a brief chance to chat with Robin about it. She loved the idea, and that inspired me.”

Suzy’s mission is to make sure the disease that’s taken so much from her family and this world, won’t keep taking fashion options from survivors too.

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