When Yshara Kelley told her stepdaughter Geneva Clark she no longer wanted to participate in breast cancer walks, Clark decided to do something drastic to reignite the fighter in her. After battling the disease that led to multiple surgeries including a mastectomy and the reconstruction of her breasts–which led to an additional operation after her body rejected the implants–Yshara is proud to call herself a 2 year survivor. But she no longer wanted to be reminded of that time in her life. Geneva knew shaving her head would be the best way to encourage the woman she calls her “bonus mom,” to continue to share her story to inspire other women.
We were there to capture Geneva’s ultimate big chop. Check it out!
Yshara couldn’t stay for Geneva’s big reveal but she had this to say afterwards:
“Seeing [Geneva] cut her hair just brought so many flashbacks. My experience of shaving my head wasn’t the easiest. As a woman you take pride in these features but seeing her do this, she had so much confidence. It strengthened me because I saw the courage she had. This reminded me that I should never stop advocating for breast cancer awareness.”
We applaud both Geneva and Yshara for their bravery and for their efforts to educate other women about the disease, especially considering the fact that the risk of dying from breast cancer is higher among black women than white women. For example, in 2011, African-American women had a 44 percent higher rate of breast cancer mortality. Staying educated about the disease, doing self exams, and encouraging the women in your life to get annual mammograms is crucial.