For Immediate Release
Office of Mrs. Bush
March 12, 2003
Remarks by Mrs. Bush at Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Embrace the Race Event
Thank you, for your warm welcome - but I should applaud you - the
fighters and the survivors of breast cancer and the family and friends
who support you. I am excited to be here to "Embrace the Race" and to
celebrate the Komen Foundation's 20 years of advocacy and action.
Thank you, Dr. Leffall for leading the Komen Foundation in the
fight against breast cancer. Thank you, our dedicated Members of
Congress for being here today - Senator George Allen, Congressman Billy
Tauzin and Congresswomen Sue Myrick and Marsha Blackburn. Thank you for
providing more than 200 million dollars for the National Breast and
Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program.
It is moving to see so much pink standing here behind me - it is
also inspiring. Today, the color pink symbolizes more than hope - it's
a symbol of courage and triumph. A few short years ago, a diagnosis of
breast cancer left little hope of recovery. But thanks to the work of
the Komen Foundation and every one of you, more women and men are
beating breast cancer and beating the odds.
All of us know someone who is touched by breast cancer. With this
disease affecting one in nine women, it is hard not to know someone.
For me, breast cancer hit close to home when my mother, Jenna Welch,
was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 78. My mother is fortunate -
she had surgery and has been cancer free for five years.
But more than 40 thousand women and men will not win their battle
with breast cancer this year. It is for them - and for the more than
200 thousand Americans who will be diagnosed this year - that we race
for a cure.
Every step and mile of the race brings us closer to finding a cure.
Nancy Brinker, our American ambassador to Hungary, has dedicated her
life to this end. Twenty years ago, when Nancy started the Susan G.
Komen Foundation in honor of her sister, breast cancer was rarely
talked about. Today, thanks to Nancy's leadership, millions more know
about the risks of breast cancer - more are aware and have access to
early detection, treatment and support. And more people around the
world, both survivors and supporters, are lacing up their running shoes
and making a difference.
In 1983, eight hundred people participated in the first Komen Race
in my home state of Texas. Today, the race is held in over 100 cities -
and with 70 thousand participants - the National Race is the largest 5K
footrace in the world. Last year, this race raised an astonishing 2.4
million dollars for research and treatment.
Both the President and I are strong supporters of the Race for the
Cure. The President ran and I walked with survivors and supporters in
both Austin and Lubbock. And although the President doesn't have a lot
of pink in his closet, he was proud to wear it on those days. We're
proud of the Komen Foundation and of the people who fight breast cancer
on race day - and every day.
The Race for the Cure is long and the road is often bumpy. But when
you are tired and thirsty and ready to give up, remember the people who
love you and the people you have loved and lost. Ralph Waldo Emerson
said, "Our greatest glory consists not in never falling, but in rising
every time we fall." Each of you show the world that a little hope, a
lot of love, and abounding courage will pick us up every time. Thank
you very much and congratulations.