Welcome to the Wellness Corner. In this article, you will read all about the people that make the FCSN possible and amazing stories of hope and encouragement. The Wellness Corner is where you will find updates on what is “new” in Wellness and will highlight the “support” in Firefighter Cancer SUPPORT Network. In this first edition, I start off by introducing myself. My name is Debbie Pike, and I have the pleasure of serving as the Wellness Coordinator for the FCSN. I was given the honor of becoming the Wellness Coordinator in 2012, following in the footsteps of my mentor Debbie Woods, FCSN Wellness Coordinator and mentor.
In 2006, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. My husband Jason, was in the Los Angeles County Fire Academy at the time. Upon my diagnosis, I was given a toolbox by Mike Dubron, founder of the FCSN, and a mentor, Debbie Woods. It was a long journey with some complications, but we were thankful for the FCSN’s support. Once I was finished with chemotherapy, surgeries, radiation and other bits and pieces of my treatment I was trained to become a mentor with the hospital where I was treated as well as with the FCSN. I was a mentor for five years when Debbie Woods passed due to cancer and I was given the opportunity to fill her shoes. The world lost a great woman.
I live in Southern California with my husband Jason and daughter Hailee. When I am not busy with FCSN or playing a taxi driver for my teenager, I like to be with my little family. We like to hike with our dogs, paddle board, go to hockey games, enjoy friends, explore new places… just live life. After surviving cancer, I try to enjoy every day, the people around me and the beauty of nature.
Let’s face it, cancer sucks – but if we are fortunate enough to survive it – let’s use it to make our lives better. That’s how I feel anyways!