A diagnosis no one wants to hear…breast cancer. It is estimated that nearly 200,000 women are diagnosed with this disease every year and that more than 40,000 will die. Men are not magically eliminated from the statistics either. Approximately 1,700 men will be diagnosed and 450 will die.

In our country, breast cancer affects women more than any other type of cancer except for skin cancer. Only lung cancer accounts for more deaths.

But a diagnosis of breast cancer isn’t necessarily a death sentence. Getting more information, the right treatment and the will to fight is the best ammunition. During October, we recognize the fight of those who have had to live with this disease and honor those who have lost the battle. I am sure that each of us knows someone close that has endured this fight.

There are many events this month that support the awareness of breast cancer, how it is diagnosed and how it is treated. Many of these are downright fun. Here’s a list of events that are happening in our back yard:

• Summit Sierra. The shopping center is hosting a series of events this October. Stop by to buy your “pink paper bra” to benefit the Renown Health Breast Cancer Patient Assistance Fund. Or join in on the “Cork and Cleavage Wine Walk” on October 9. For more information on these events and more, visit: http://www.thesummitonline.com/reno/events-promotions.html

• TrekWomen Breast Cancer Awareness Ride. This is a family fun ride for all ages and abilities. Prizes will be offered and goodie bags for all pre-registered riders. There is a marked rout and on-route support and refreshments. 100% of the ride registration funds go directly to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. $25 registration fee. Starts at 10AM at Scheels in Sparks. For more information, visit: http://www.scheelssports.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/events?langId=-1&storeId=10001&catalogId=10101#/?i=1

• Renown. Through October 21, vote for the Renown’s staff video entitled “Down”. The Pink Glove Dance competition raises $10,000 for local area cancer patients. The Renown Health Pink Gove Dance Team, composed of employee across all departments, had the opportunity to show their support in the fight against breast cancer. For more information or to vote, visit: http://pinkglovedance.com/competition/entry-114 or http://renown.org.