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A Success Story - Camelia Cruz

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 Camelia Cruz telling her Success Story 

CSF Gala - May 21, 2004 

 

Camelia Cruz was diagnosed with osteogenic sarcoma at the age of 13. As a result of the cancer, she had her left leg amputated above the knee. Then she received a course of chemotherapy that lasted twelve months. Although at age 13 those 12 months seemed like a lifetime to her, Camelia is overjoyed to say that she has been in remission for 14 years. She received her Associate Degree with Honors from Lee College in Baytown in 2006. Her lifetime dream is to become a social worker and help the patients of Texas Children’s Hospital. In her own words:  

"My life values changed because of my experience with cancer. I know, without a doubt, that my appreciation for the gift of life has more than multiplied. I also learned to respect the thin line between life and death and will never take it for granted. Another thing I learned is that who, what, and where I am depends on me. Therefore without a solid foundation I am nothing. Learning that to be happy I must first find happiness within. I also learned that just like a smile happiness is also contagious. So if I am happy those around me will feel happiness, which ultimately affects my environment. I whole-heartedly believe that my life values after my experience with cancer left me with a better appreciation of life, respect for my foundation, and over all happiness in life. What my experience with cancer did teach me are things I needed to know to succeed in life are purpose, determination and perseverance. Before cancer I had dreams and goals of going to college. After cancer my dreams and goals became making it to my next birthday. By the time I made it to my 18th birthday and graduated from High School I knew college was out of the question but only due to finances. Cancer Survivors' Fund held my hand and made me believe that I was not a victim but a very brave young woman to survive cancer with a bright and happy future. I am very fortunate to have them on my side."

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