Celebrate Life is an annual event that brings together both cancer survivors and caregivers for a day of empowerment and celebration.

ZION, Ill. – On Friday, June 9, Deanna Chenoweth, a breast cancer survivor from Miami joined more than 135 fellow five-year cancer survivors at Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) for its 29th Annual Celebrate Life® event.

Celebrate Life is an annual event that brings together both cancer survivors and caregivers for a day of empowerment and celebration. Survivors stand united to support one another, celebrate the moments they’ve gained, and encourage those who are amidst their own cancer journey. While some cancer rates continue to climb, medical treatments are also advancing, providing more patients with the hope and resources they need to battle this disease. Survivorship is the new frontier in cancer care, and hospitals, like CTCA, offer dedicated survivorship programs to help patients achieve a high quality of life post- cancer treatment.

The day began with the Celebrants and caregivers entering the CTCA® at Midwestern campus on seven large coach busses. As they disembarked, many with loved ones by their side, they took a momentous walk down a lavish red carpet, which was lined with hundreds of cheering family, friends, caregivers and hospital care team members who attended to help these individuals celebrate their five years of cancer survivorship.

After the red-carpet walk, Chenoweth took part in a commemorative tree-planting ceremony, symbolizing the wonder of life and growth. The 2017 Celebrate Life event marks the 29th year that a tree has been planted in honor of each five-year survivor in attendance, helping replenish and strengthen our nation’s landscape with a thriving forest of life-giving trees that represent cancer survivorship. Participants honored represented 29 states, and one from the Bahamas, each offering support and strength to others, as they proudly posed for a photo in front of their commemorative tree.

“Through so many twists and turns, I am happy to be standing here after five years,” said Chenoweth. “I have been blessed to see my daughters finish high school, celebrate my son’s 17th birthday, and I have embraced a more spontaneous, carefree spirit. The reality of being a five-year survivor hasn’t hit me yet, but I am so thankful for my treatment and the love from the CTCA team.”

Many of the five-year survivors also took time to walk through the hospital, offering comfort, support and the traditional “Hope” pin to other patients and family members who are currently battling cancer. Before the day concluded, each celebrant was personally honored and revered, on stage, in front of and along with their fellow five-year survivors.

“Five years ago, this amazing group of cancer survivors came to CTCA with a great sense of hope, searching for answers and cancer care that fit their specific needs,” said Scott Jones, president and CEO of CTCA at Midwestern. “While everyone’s journey and experience is unique, we honor and respect the strength and perseverance it takes for them to be here. Today is not only a testament to the CTCA five-year cancer survivors being honored, but also all survivors, wherever they may be in their journeys.”

For more information on Celebrate Life or CTCA at Midwestern please visit: www.cancercenter.com/midwestern.