Keirson's story

Young Queensland mum of two fundraises for Mater Chicks in Pink following her own battle with breast cancer.

Not long after finding out her father had been diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2015, Keirson Dewitt felt a painful lump in her left breast.

The 39-year-old mum of two discovered the lump while on a family holiday and couldn’t overcome the feeling that she was about to face some health battles of her own.

“My husband was adamant that I go and get it looked at straight away, but at that stage I was just focused on my dad and the trip, so I promised I would do it as soon as I got home,” Keirson said.

The family continued their road trip along the Great Ocean Road to create lasting memories, not knowing that, several months later, Keirson would be in the offices of Dr Chris Pyke at Mater Private Hospital Brisbane, anxiously awaiting the results of a biopsy.

“All I kept thinking was that it wouldn’t be cancer, it couldn’t be, not with dad going through it—there couldn’t be two people in the one family,” Keirson said.

“But I was wrong.

“In September 2015, I was diagnosed with breast cancer.

“It sounds silly, but the diagnosis didn’t hit me at that point at all.

“In fact, I felt guilty because my dad was terminal and I had many options – I knew I was going to be ok and he wasn’t.”

Sadly, Keirson’s father passed away in January 2016 and, a week later, Keirson began her first round of chemotherapy.

Over the next two years, Keirson would battle breast cancer not once, but twice. 

Determined to remain positive after her treatment and recovery, Keirson decided to raise funds through Mater Chicks in Pink to support other women affected by breast cancer.

“I just think that there’s always someone worse off than me,” Keirson said.

“With what we went through with dad, I don’t feel I have any right to complain.

“I still have a chance to live and that means everything to me.

“This year, I made a really conscious effort to give back to Mater Chicks in Pink.

“Having benefitted from the services, I know how important they are and how much they mean to people like me.

“Going through cancer is such a lonely journey and having that support around me meant the world.”

The RACQ International Women’s Day Fun Run (IWDFR) is one of Mater Foundation’s largest fundraising initiatives, with more than $700,000 raised in 2018 to help fund vital research into the causes and treatment of breast cancer, as well as provide practical support services for women going through treatment.

The 2019 RACQ International Women’s Day Fun Run will be held on Sunday, 3 March, at the Cultural Forecourt in South Bank, with the first event kicking off at 6am. If you would like to join, register now or make a donation to support women affected by breast cancer.