Genarose Boessen Hohertz – May 15, 1963 – October 1, 2014
FOUNDER of She Will Fight – Established November 2013
In August of 2012, our Founder, Genarose, was diagnosed with the late stages of Ovarian Cancer. After surgery her life was forever changed. She transformed from a strong, independent, fit, full-of-life woman to a scared, broken version of someone she no longer recognized. After enduring weeks of recovery, living in hospital gowns and sweats, completely dependent on the help of others, she stood in front of the mirror and said, “ENOUGH! Tomorrow I’m wearing my Jimmy Choo’s” And she did!
She started her first round of chemo, decked out – with hair done, sassy clothes, and her favorite pair of shoes. Genarose walked in to that clinic with the same moxie she always possessed when embarking on a new life change. Although she was living in a body that was failing her, and a mind that had become weak and insecure, she chose to fight by remembering who she was, and who she had always been. She refused to forget.
Not yet strong enough to work, and completely drained of all financial resources, Gen’s friends and family quickly pulled together and made sure ALL of her needs were met. They knew paying the bills and keeping food on the table were always a priority… but only one layer of what made Gen who she was. When she lost her hair she searched for the perfect wig and then her friends bought her two. They sent scarves and accessories and provided all the products to maintain her new look. When she gained 25 lbs from the steroids her sister sent a gift card and she bought bigger jeans. On her good days she was treated to lunch or a pedicure. Girls night out never stopped and the mailbox was always full of love. For Generose these things ARE necessities, and help to provide the strength she needs mentally to fight this monster.
Genarose soon found out that many, many women are in her same situation…. battling, broke and broken. However, most don’t have the support, or only a fraction of the network that Genarose has. They are completely dependent on state programs, foundations, or perhaps a kind neighbor and a few exhausted family members to pull it all together. They feel full of guilt and can’t imagine asking for one more thing from their caregivers. Their situation leaves them feeling defeated and far too humble to ask for something that would make them feel pretty or pampered. Yet that is exactly what they need!
It was from this realization that “She Will Fight” was born.
Genarose immediately began researching, dreaming, planning, and preparing to improve what women battling the late stage of cancer have access to, in terms of support. She felt confident that “She Will Fight” could help shift the paradigm of what society considers to be a staple or a necessity. Genarose felt strongly that what a woman considers to be a need is not for anyone else to decide, and that “She Will Fight” could do everything and anything to provide those needs.
The simple truth is, women are the foundation of our families. She is our world, the light and the love in all our relationships. She is a gift. Without her strength, we fall and unravel. Without her strength she fades and loses the fight.
We can change that. Let’s start today. Let’s give her the strength, and SHE WILL FIGHT!