Bill Brotherton of the Daily Item Talks to Terrie Stulz About Her Involvement with the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

LYNN — Theresa Stultz was 55 years old when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. It turned her life upside down. Yet, as a breast cancer survivor, the Lynn native considers herself “blessed” and she’s been committed ever since to raising funds to benefit cancer research.

“I’m very blessed. I got the very best medical care at Mass. General (Hospital),” she said.

On Sept. 30, Stultz and her team,“Terrie’s Angels,” will participate in the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5-mile walk for the 16th year. The Angels have raised some $160,000 during that time.

“One of my daughters heard about Making Strides on the radio or TV,” recalled Stultz, who also survived uterine cancer 10 years ago and was a caregiver for her mother, who had breast cancer. She is now supporting Darleen Shedden, a former co-worker at Equitable Bank and dear friend in New Hampshire, who is battling kidney cancer. “It sounded like something I wanted to do. That was 15 years ago, and about 10 or 12 of us, including Darleen, walked and raised some money. It was life-affirming, seeing so many women thinking positively despite wearing scarves and kerchiefs (to cover bald heads, caused by chemotherapy and radiation treatments).

“We’ve been doing it every year ever since. I never want to have my daughters or granddaughters have to fight cancer.”

Stultz’s husband, Charlie, said, “Everyone knows someone who’s been affected by cancer. Twenty years ago, you didn’t have a chance. But now, thanks to research, that’s no longer true. That’s why we, and many of our family and friends, do this every year.”

The first couple of years, Stultz and her Angels took the T into Boston, then walked from Government Center to the Hatch Shell on the Esplanade, where Making Strides starts and ends. “We certainly walked a lot more than the five miles,” said Charlie, then laughed. “The second year, it rained. We all had a great time walking in the rain.”

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