• Andrew Lock and Marcel Kievit

    Andrew Lock and Marcel Kievit

  • Colette and John Mackay

    Colette and John Mackay

  • Kay Johnston presents Colette Mackay with Life Membership

    Kay Johnston presents Colette Mackay with Life Membership

  • Scott as Elvis, volunteering to be a ventriloquist's 'doll'

    Scott as Elvis, volunteering to be a ventriloquist's 'doll'

  • One is a ventriloquist named Darren Carr!

    One is a ventriloquist named Darren Carr!

  • Carrol Cummings, Sonja Mills and Wendy Shepherd

    Carrol Cummings, Sonja Mills and Wendy Shepherd

  • Nancy Taylor, Lyn Funnell and Ruth Funnell

    Nancy Taylor, Lyn Funnell and Ruth Funnell

  • Ray Miller, Bob Taylor, Barry Funnell and Ron Shepherd

    Ray Miller, Bob Taylor, Barry Funnell and Ron Shepherd

  • Rachel Evagelou and Ginger Gorman

    Rachel Evagelou and Ginger Gorman

  • Maria Hicks, Philippa Brearley, Angela Finnegan and Jacquie Travia

    Maria Hicks, Philippa Brearley, Angela Finnegan and Jacquie Travia

  • Rebecca Jackson and Ben Mackay

    Rebecca Jackson and Ben Mackay

  • Suzanne Vidler and Marisa Geruss

    Suzanne Vidler and Marisa Geruss

  • Brenda Watts, Kay Johnston and Eileen Bryan

    Brenda Watts, Kay Johnston and Eileen Bryan

  • Tony Haley,Peter Funnell Marisa Geruss and Andrew Lock

    Tony Haley,Peter Funnell Marisa Geruss and Andrew Lock

Bosom Buddies Celebration of Life Dinner

27 October 2014

Bosom Buddies is a Canberra based not for profit initiative that has brought so much support to women of all ages with breast cancer. It operates in a variety of ways and is a reassuring group of women who care to give of their time to those recently diagnosed or going through an overwhelming diary of appointments, tests, operations, recovery , chemo therapy and radiation therapy. Women on this travelator to treatment often just need someone to support them, particularly if that someone is a survivor. And firm friendships come out of the shared experience.

Annually Bosom Buddies hold a Celebration of Life dinner on the Australian Breast Cancer Day, 27 October and while they don’t whoop it up by dancing on the tables or swinging from chandeliers you can bet that idea has gone through the minds of these women who’ve fought long and hard to live. They cling to the hope that those bloody cancer cells aren’t spreading their destruction through their bodies and that this is really a new beginning.

Lots of friends die on the breast cancer roundabout. Most recently the incomparable Anna Wellings- Booth whose strength and resilience was an example for all. The tributes to her were wonderful as many gathered at the Yacht Club to share in a memorial and afternoon of toasting her with champagne, sprinkling petals on the lake where her beloved dragon boats of Dragon’s Abreast, the organisation she helped establish and supported to the nth degree, paddled out and remembered well the contribution she made too to Bosom Buddies. Her wise council gave her the moniker of Wise Old Dragon and a boat named GoAnna.

For this year’s Bosom Buddies celebration dinner an inspirational talk by our most accomplished high-altitude mountaineer Andrew Lock put an entirely different perspective on facing your fears. His accomplishments include 14 of the 8000 metre mountains climbed including two Everest summits. Lock is the only Australian to do it. But getting those stats has taken years and a formidable determination and discipline. Andrew Lock seems to be that kind of person but it has come with the same kind of disappointments and stresses faced by so many mountaineers, but Lock kept going. An odious comparison perhaps but cancer brings out the determination in people too. Climbing mountains and the exhilaration that brings, when accompanied by disappointments too, is a lesson in life skills. Cancer certainly is a mountain that sucks the oxygen out of you, gives your body an impossible workout and tests your courage. But you don’t get to choose with cancer and I’m in awe of people who climb those mega mountains and on this occasion we all learnt something unique from each other.