BVRMC Patient Fighting Cancer Stays Strong through Community Support

Amber Chrischilles | August 24th, 2022

Chantel Stuart is a wife, mom of three and small business owner. Stuart is also a BVRMC patient fighting cancer. She feels comforted in her fight knowing she is supported by the generosity of community members through programs like AWARE.

AWARE (Annual Walk And Run Event) is an ongoing fundraiser benefiting patients receiving cancer treatment at BVRMC. Funds are used to help purchase wigs, provide gas and grocery gift cards, and other patient care items that insurance doesn’t typically cover.

Stuart, who resides in Pomeroy, was diagnosed with cervix cancer, and then later with lung cancer in 2017. With doctors in Lake City, Sioux City and Rochester, MN, she has made countless trips to appointments. In 2019, Stuart started receiving treatments at BVRMC, lessening the drive time to and from appointments.

Throughout her time receiving treatments at BVRMC, Stuart has been the recipient of gas and grocery cards purchased through AWARE funds. When talking about the gift cards, Stuart stated, “I feel like it’s a God thing, because it always happens when you need it the most. It’s really helped out.”

“That’s why this program and the gift cards are so amazing—because when my white blood cell counts were low, I had to come every day,” continues Stuart. “With the gas prices the way they are, it was wonderful.”

Stuart also expressed a “huge thank you” to donors in the community for their support. “Cancer is a crappy word. You say that to somebody and I feel like everybody unites and comes together to help. I’m thankful to have something like that.”

“Five dollars, even one dollar can go a long way,” continues Stuart. “It is truly amazing. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”

Along with the support she feels from the community, Stuart also expressed appreciation for the care she receives at BVRMC. She feels the staff is knowledgeable, always willing to answer her questions and able to collaborate well with all her doctors.

“Everybody has been super sweet along this journey, this extremely tough chapter in our lives,” says Stuart. “It makes the process so much easier when you deal with kind nurses and kind doctors.”

When thinking about BVRMC staff who have made a difference in her journey, Stuart was able to name a handful of employees in the Oncology & Infusion Center who she described as helpful and friendly.

“They always have a smile on their face. They may be having a bad day, but they never show you. I’ve really noticed that,” continues Stuart. “And it’s everybody in the hospital, no matter who you meet—the ladies who bring the food down, volunteers, or people doing x-rays—it’s everybody.”

The Buena Vista Regional Healthcare Foundation supports BVRMC’s vision to be the best place for patients to receive care. Through AWARE funds, BVRMC is able to provide comfort to patients who are receiving cancer treatments.

To learn more about BVRMC’s Annual AWARE 5K event held on Saturday, September 17 and to register, please visit Proceeds go directly to patients, helping make a difference in their journeys battling cancer.

Chantel Stuart at BVRMC's Oncology & Infusion Center.
AWARE (Annual Walk And Run Event) is an ongoing fundraiser benefiting patients receiving cancer treatment at BVRMC. Chantel Stuart, BVRMC patient fighting cancer, feels comforted through her journey knowing that she is not only receiving quality care at BVRMC, but is supported by the generosity of community members through AWARE funds.