P-CEP ‘Pink Out’ game to honor courageous breast cancer survivor

 P-CEP ‘Pink Out’ game to honor courageous breast cancer survivor

Canton resident Rosemary Lutz, who has courageously battled breast cancer since 2021, will be recognized during a ceremony during Tuesday’s Plymouth-Salem “Pink Out” boys soccer match.

Just about every emotion imaginable flowed through Rosemary Lutz’s mind when she learned she would be the honoree during Tuesday night’s 7 p.m. “Pink Out” soccer match featuring Plymouth and Salem at the P-CEP east turf stadium.

Diagnosed with breast cancer on her birthday (July 9) in 2021, Lutz — whose granddaughter Gabrielle graduated from Canton High School in 2023 and whose grandson Aiden is currently a freshman at Canton High School — is in remission after undergoing surgery, and months of chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

While undergoing chemotherapy, doctors discovered a gallstone that was lodged in her bile duct — which led to surgeries to remove the stone and, ultimately, her gall bladder following her cancer radiation treatments.

A true warrior, Lutz attends regular physical therapy sessions to help her navigate leg and foot neuropathies and lymphedema caused by the chemo treatments.

‘Pink Out’ power

“Pink Out” games have been prevalent on high school campuses for the past several years to increase awareness of breast cancer, raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, treatments and a cure.

Athletes often wear pink jerseys or accessories during the games to heighten awareness of the disease and honor the courageous people who are diagnosed with the form of cancer every year.

Breast cancer accounts for one-third of all cancer cases in women and one of every eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

The Pink Out PCEP soccer match will kick off at 7 pm at the east turf stadium
The Pink Out PCEP soccer match will kick off at 7 pm at the east turf stadium

“When my son (Michael) first told me, I was honored, humbled and shocked,” said Lutz. “I never, ever would have dreamed I would be  the recipient of such an honor. That people think this much of me and what I’ve gone through … well, I’m deeply touched.”

Organizers of Tuesday night’s event will raise funds by raffling a Yeti cooler, selling pink merchandise and through concessions sales.

A portion of the proceeds will be presented to Lutz to help her pay for mounting medical bills.

Finding it fast helped

Early detection likely aided Lutz’s recovery and current remission.

“I discovered a pea-sized lump during a self-examination,” she said. “I had read that if it was hard — like mine was — to schedule a doctor’s examination as soon as possible.

“My doctor had me come in right away. He scheduled an MRI, which led to the diagnosis, and I had surgery at St. Joseph’s Hospital.”

Lutz underwent genetic testing and revealed her sister and niece have both been diagnosed with breast cancer — revelations that she said will provide vital information moving forward for her granddaughter.

“Gabrielle can be tested earlier and more frequently and will make sure to take care of herself,” Lutz said.

“My grandchildren are my driving force to pull me through this. I want to see them grow into adulthood and be a part of their lives.”

Worthy honoree

Lutz was recommended to be the “Pink Out” honoree by Plymouth High School educator Melanie Burkett, who advises a club at P-CEP that organizes the annual SJ5K fund-raiser.

“Rosemary was initially nominated for the SJ5K last year, but was not selected,” Burkett said. “Since I advise that club, I am always looking for ways to support those that did not get chosen.

“My son plays for Plymouth soccer and I volunteered to lead the ‘Pink Out’ game. When we were looking for someone to support, I recommended Rosemary.”

And she could not have recommended a more worthy survivor.

Ed Wright can be reached at 734-664-4657 or edwright@socialhousenews.com.

Ed Wright

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