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Breast cancer survivor’s lap of Australia raises awareness of the importance of early detection

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Tom ShanahanAlbany Advertiser
Eliza Woods, Donna Falconer and Annette Eades. RIGHT: The Groovy Booby Bus outside the BreastScreen WA clinic in Albany.
Camera IconEliza Woods, Donna Falconer and Annette Eades. RIGHT: The Groovy Booby Bus outside the BreastScreen WA clinic in Albany. Credit: supplied

A breast cancer survivor who has travelled around Australia to spread the word on the importance of screening check-ups made her way down to Albany to share her story.

BreastScreen NSW’s Donna Falconer has been driving her Groovy Booby Bus from NSW around northern Australia to WA since May this year, stopping off at Cooktown, Darwin, Port Hedland and Kunun-urra to create awareness of the importance of early detection of breast cancer.

Ms Falconer was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer at the age of 44 in 2009, describing it as a “total shock”. “I was just blown away ... I thought ‘This can’t be true’,” she said.

Since being cleared of the disease, Ms Falconer has sold her house, quit her job and bought a caravan, making it her life’s mission to educate Australian women on the importance of regular check-ups.

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“Like anyone who’s been through it, it’s a very hard journey to go through,” she said.

The Groovy Booby Bus outside the Albany BreastCancer WA Clinic
Camera IconThe Groovy Booby Bus outside the Albany BreastCancer WA Clinic

“Life was too short, and I sold my house, threw in my job and bought an RV. I’m totally self-funded. It’s all about spreading awareness.”

Ms Falconer visited the recently opened BreastScreen WA clinic in Albany to encourage residents to have screening mammograms at the new clinic in Yakamia.

BreastScreen WA Albany clinic receptionist Karen Cussons praised Ms Falconer’s “openness and willingness to talk to the community” in her mission to spread the word about breast screening and early detection.

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