Betsy Garner Wyant was in disbelief when she was diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer in April 2014. Thoughts began spinning as she processed the news. Her parents had already lost a son; Betsy’s brother passed away at age 32 from a rare noncancerous spinal bone tumor, and she couldn’t imagine the thought of them losing another child. And as a single parent of two, Betsy didn’t want to leave her sons without a mother. Fortunately she turned to Moffitt Cancer Center, and with the help of her team of breast cancer experts, today she is cancer free.
Wyant hopes to raise awareness of the disease and help others, which is why she plans to attend the annual Moffitt Cancer Center Luncheon in Sarasota. This year’s event is Nov. 1 at Michael’s on the Bay at Marie Selby Gardens, located at 811 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota. Keynote speakers Kenneth Y. Tsai, M.D., Ph.D., and Amber Orman, M.D., will discuss prevention and pioneering treatment options at Moffitt.
Having no family history of cancer or any physical warning signs and living a healthy lifestyle, Wyant never expected to receive the news during her annual mammogram follow-up.
“I was so blessed to have a friend refer me to Moffitt Cancer Center for a second opinion,” she recalls. “Right away my surgeon became my quarterback, giving me a roadmap and a sense of comfort and peace. At that moment, I knew I was going to be OK.”
Wyant had chemotherapy and radiation at Moffitt. She also underwent three reconstruction surgeries, including a mastectomy and an invasive pedicled TRAM flap procedure, which involved rebuilding her breasts using tissues from her stomach. Wyant’s team of physicians included Susan Hoover, M.D., FACS; Michael Montejo, M.D.; Loretta Loftus, M.D.; and Paul Smith, M.D.
“It was a three-year nightmare and process,” Wyant says. “I remember feeling so exhausted and sick every day, but I knew there was an end in sight. I truly believe my team at Moffitt saved my life.”
Since its inception, the Moffitt Cancer Center Luncheon has raised more than $1 million for Moffitt. For more information, please visit Moffitt.org/Sarasota.
About Moffitt Cancer Center
Moffitt is dedicated to one lifesaving mission: to contribute to the prevention and cure of cancer. The Tampa-based facility is one of only 49 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers, a distinction that recognizes Moffitt’s excellence in research, clinical trials, prevention and cancer control. Moffitt is listed as one of the top 10 cancer hospitals in the nation and has been listed in U.S. News & World Report as one of the “Best Hospitals” for cancer care since 1999. Moffitt devotes more than 2 million square feet to research and patient care. Moffitt’s expert nursing staff is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center with Magnet® status, its highest distinction. With more than 5,600 team members, Moffitt has an economic impact in the state of $2.1 billion. For more information, call 1-888-MOFFITT (1-888-663-3488), visit MOFFITT.org, and follow the momentum on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.