CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) -One Cooper River Bridge Run competitor says this race isn’t about winning but about doing something she wasn’t sure she would ever be able to.
Jenn Andrews lost her foot to Sarcoma, a rare and uncurable form of cancer, only a year ago. Now she’s getting ready for her first ever 10k race because she says she refused to let her amputation control her.
The Charlotte woman says that for her, the Cooper River Bridge Run is not just a race, but a way to show that her amputation doesn’t define her.
Andrews’ story began six years ago when she was getting a pedicure while pregnant with her first child. She says the nail tech noticed she has a small bump on her foot and when she went to get it looked at by a doctor they said it wasn’t a big deal.
A little over a year later she was pregnant with her second child when the mass came back even larger. She had it removed and then went through endless tests and three years of remission.
Then in January 2018, the mass was back and taking over her entire right foot. Just a few months later, Andrews’ foot and part of her leg was amputated.
“I had a hard time, anxiety, depression,” Andrews says. “I struggled with depression, but once I had the surgery that went away, and even though that had a new way of doing things I was still going to be able to do everything and that’s my mission now is to prove to myself that even though this happened I can do the same things.”
She says after the March 2018 surgery she determined she would push and then push harder to become the active woman she was before the cancer. Andrews says she always loved working out and being active, so something that could take that away from her was extremely threatening. She says she didn’t let it stop her.
“Building and training towards it and I feel like if you do that you can do anything, that’s what I’ve done,” Andrews says.
She says that’s the goal that has led her right here to Charleston.
“I’m here for the run,” Andrews says. “It’s my first 10k ever and first 10k in running blade.”
Andrews says even though thousands of people will be running alongside her, this race isn’t about winning.
“To be able to run longer distances is a personal challenge and to prove to myself that there’s nothing I can’t do, so it’s not even competing with anyone but myself and improving my times.”
Andrews says if there is anyone who is going through the same situation that she has of fighting a rare and uncurable cancer, then she would like them to reach out on her website. You can find her story, contact information, and keep up with her journey on www.moveforjenn.org.
More information on her organization to help people obtain certain types of prosthetics can also be found on that website.