C A N C E R W A R R I O R
After she won the battle for her life, she then
had to decide what to do with the rest of it.
By MARSHA BROWN
Kim Locke is one of the very
fortunate, although on that day
back in January of 2016, she didn’t feel
fortunate. She was at work when she
got “the call,” her cell phone rang and
she saw “that number” appear on her
screen. She knew what they were going
to say before she heard the voice on the
other end of the call asked her if she
had someone with her, someone she
could look to for support.
“I did have someone there,” Locke
said. “Several women at my company
had been through breast cancer and we
had talked about it.”
Locke knew what the voice on the
other end of the call was going to say
before she actually heard the words,
“You have cancer.” She had recently
undergone testing after finding a lump
in her breast.
She was hoping, praying that she’d
get a good doctor, one that would be
sensitive to her needs.
That’s when Locke met Dr. Amy
“I call her my angel,” Locke said.
“But she’s not just my angel, she’s a lot
of people’s angel.”
“Not only is she an amazing
surgeon, but she’s an amazing person,”
Locke said. “When I looked at her
there’s something about her eyes that
made me feel better.”
The cancer patient and the gifted
surgeon became friends.
Before Locke launched her battle
with breast cancer, her strategy needed
to be mapped out and decisions had to
“I started seeing the other doctors
that would be involved in my treatment
and finding out what my treatment
would entail,” Locke said. “My cancer
was so small and they’d caught it so
early that it wasn’t a decision that I had
to make today or tomorrow. Dr. Gunter
wanted me to have the whole picture.”
Even working with an excellent
doctor, one she had full faith in, Locke
had some frustrating moments.
Locke recalls one visit when she
told Dr. Gunter, “Why are you giving me
all these options? Why don’t you just
make the decision for me?” She said, “I
can’t decide for you.”
Dr. Gunter smiled and explained to
Locke that she was one of the lucky
ones. Her cancer had been discovered
early while it was very small. Those
factors gave her a lot of options. But,
finally it came down to the fact that only
Kim Locke could decide what was best
for Kim Locke.
Ultimately, Locke chose a
“She pointed out that my odds
were about the same whether I had a
lumpectomy or mastectomy,” she said.
“My surgery was Feb. 16, 2017.”
Surgery went well as did the postsurgery
“The radiation effected me hardly
at all,” Locke said. “Some people have
their skin burn. You go every single day
and see the same people every single
day. Some of the girls would have some
burning to the skin, but I didn’t. …I was
done by about the first week of May.”
Mother’s Day, May 14, was a special
day for Locke.
Dr. Amy Gunter and Kim Locke
John and Kim Locke