Oct. 22, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -
Breast cancer survivor and recent University of Alabama graduate Jessica Bailey returned to campus this week and stopped into visit the Crimson Tide gymnastics team prior to Tuesday's practice.
Bailey was diagnosed with breast cancer last fall and returned home to California to begin treatment while finishing her degree in studio art. She returned to Tuscaloosa on Jan. 25, 2013 to take part in the gymnastics team's Power of Pink meet. She was recognized, along with 17 others during the pre-meet introductions, becoming the youngest breast cancer survivor to be honored in that way.
This week's return to campus comes just days after she completed her treatment. She has tallied a year and handful of days as a survivor and she shared her message of hope and determination with the team.
"Jessica's courage and spirit provide a living embodiment of what the Power of Pink is all about," UA head coach Sarah Patterson said. "This is a disease that can strike anyone at any age, and for our ladies to hear Jessica tell her story, I think that really drives that point home."
Patterson began the Power of Pink initiative in the fall of 2004 as a way to help raise awareness in the fight against breast cancer fund. Since that time, the Tide has helped raise over $1.35 million for the DCH Breast Cancer Fund, which helps disadvantaged women in the West Alabama area, and will be holding its 10th annual "pink" meet on Jan. 24 against Arkansas.