"Tribute To Courage" Book, Honoring Those Touched By Cancer

A new project in East Texas pays tribute to those who have faced cancer. It's a book, marking the 20th anniversary of the Tyler Cattle Barons' Gala. The book is called "Tribute to Courage." Anyone can sponsor a page in honor or memory of a loved one who has waged the battle. It's also an opportunity to thank those who treat or take care of cancer patients. We give you a closer look at the book and let you now how you can get involved.

On one page, a young boy with the heading "HE IS OUR BRAVE LITTLE SOLDIER."

Another page includes a picture of a young girl with her dad, thanking him for his support.

Yet another page includes a group of doctors who treat cancer patients, helping them through their journey.

Page after page, stories of people affected by cancer. A book is being created here in East Texas by the American Cancer Society's Tyler Cattle Barons' Committee.

"This is actually kind of a neater way, and a little more special way, to tell personal stories about survivors and those who are still fighting the battle. It's also a way to honor a care giver, just anyone who has had some kind of life experience with cancer and it's really a special thing," says Leslie Watson, committee member.

Leslie is not only helping to create this keepsake, but is sponsoring a page for her mother who pasted away from cancer last year. "I think those people who don't know me and don't know my mom will read a little bit about her story and hopefully if they're fighting a battle in their family may be this will give them some hope."

"She was my hero," says Kendrick Henderson about his mother. He shares a similar story of losing his mother to cancer. "It's very important to me now because I think it's something that my mother would want me to do. She would want me to bring awareness to others."

Kendrick hopes sharing his mother's story of breast cancer may save someone else's life. "This may weird, but she was a survivor, even though she's gone and not with me anymore. She was a survivor. She overcame a lot in her 53 years on this earth."

Several East Texans have already responded sponsoring a page. Some have included pictures, a poem, a child's drawing, others simply include their loved ones name. The pages can be as involved, or simple, as someone wants to make them.

"I'm looking forward to giving a copy to my dad who doesn't know I am doing it and I think he will be very touched and moved," says Leslie.

Kendrick adds, "I'm just glad that I had the opportunity to tell her how much I loved her everyday before she passed away."

Now Kendrick and others will have the opportunity to tell their stories of hope, and love and courage as they live on in the pages of this new commemorative book.

The "Tribute to Courage" book will be given to guests at the 2007 Tyler Cattle Barons' Gala June 9th. For those not attending the Gala, copies will be available at Tyler's American Cancer Society office on South Broadway for $5.

If you are interested in participating in the book, the deadline is April 4th. You can print an order form by clicking the on link at the top of this story. They are $75 a page. The person you are recognizing will also be listed in the Tyler Cattle Barons Gala Invitation as well as on a display at the actual Gala.

For more information, please call the American Cancer Society in Tyler at 903-597-1383.

Gillian Sheridan reporting.