Norma Kehoe

Turning loss into action

Norma Kehoe with family
We need to support research into all causes of cancer in order to save lives.

In the last 40 years, Norma Kehoe has lost 15 family members to cancer and has supported many others from diagnosis to remission. Her husband – who is currently being treated for prostate cancer and small lymphocytic leukemia – has lost 8 of his siblings, mostly to lung and brain cancer. His surviving sister has throat cancer. Norma lost her mom to stomach cancer, her sister to sarcoma and her cousin to leukemia. Her son has survived aggressive leukemia, her daughter has lived through melanoma and both her children continue to undergo routine, follow-up testing. Outside her family, 2 close friends have battled breast cancer and 6 others have died of cancer.

There is no doubt cancer is a constant in Norma’s life and yet she confidently says, “I have 2 choices: I can deal with it and do what I can to make a difference or I can sit in the corner and cry. I refuse to sit in the corner.”

Norma is passionately involved with multiple cancer charities as a volunteer and fundraiser. She has participated in the CIBC Run for the Cure for 4 years and has been a door-to-door canvasser, volunteer and Relay For Life participant for the Canadian Cancer Society for about 10 years. She says giving back is her way of making a difference. Norma believes research into the causes of cancer is critical to uncovering how to prevent it, treat it and – ideally – cure it.

“My hope is by raising money for research, they can find new ways to fight cancer, catch it earlier or make it a disease you can live with.”