A Utah family of cancer survivors has shared a remarkable story of perseverance and recovery.
Annette Turner was diagnosed with stage 1 cervical cancer, while her husband, Troy Turner, was diagnosed with stage 3 non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2008, Daily Mail reported. In 2015, at just 8 years old, their daughter Chrissy became one of the youngest people ever to be diagnosed with secretory breast carcinoma, a rare form of cancer that accounts for less than 0.1 percent of all breast cancers.
Although the rare cancer was first believed to be unique to juvenile patients, there have been reported cases in women ranging from 3 to 86 years old, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
Chrissy had an operation to remove all of the tissue of her right breast to prevent the cancer from spreading. Following the surgery, doctors told the couple their daughter was cancer-free and would not need radiation treatment.
Troy underwent chemotherapy for eight months in 2008. His cancer went into remission, but came back in 2011.
"People ask: 'How do you deal?' and I say: 'What choice do we have?'" Annette told Daily Mail.
The family's resiliency appeared to pay off. By 2013, Annette and Troy were healthy. As of 2017, Annette's cancer has not returned, and Troy and Chrissy's cancers have both stayed in remission.
"Honestly, with all we've gone through, she's doing really well," Annette said of her daughter, adding that the surgery has not slowed her down one bit. "We've all had such close brushes with cancer. It's really aligned us."
Now the family has a new challenge: overcoming the aftermath of Chrissy's mastectomy.
In August 2017, Chrissy had her first appointment with a plastic surgeon to discuss the reconstruction of her left breast.
"The hardest part is that we have yet to see [Chrissy] evolve," Annette said. "I know that there's going to be parts of her puberty, as she grows, that will be hard."
Annette has told her daughter that, unlike other girls, she'll only grow on one side of her chest. She said it doesn't seem to bother Chrissy.
"That could change, she'll go through emotions I'm sure, but whatever she needs, we'll support her however we possibly can," Annette said, adding that Chrissy was a little nervous and reluctant to talk about breast implants.
"At first she was nervous, she didn't really want to talk about it," Annette continued, saying that the doctor and family eventually "kind of got her laughing" and "showed her a breast implant and what that looks like."
"By the time we left, she was really lighthearted," Annette said.
Despite its history of health problems, the family remains hopeful for the future.
"Chrissy is just a glowing ray of positivity," Annette said. "She brings smiles to everybody's faces. With what we've gone through, it just solidifies the importance of hope ... every breath of life is worth fighting for."