Courtney Ehrnsberger of Kalida agreed to speak at Ottoville’s 14th annual Cancer Walk. Ehrnsberger provided testament to her ongoing fight with cancer. (DHI Media/Rebecca Violet)
Courtney Ehrnsberger of Kalida agreed to speak at Ottoville’s 14th annual Cancer Walk. Ehrnsberger provided testament to her ongoing fight with cancer. (DHI Media/Rebecca Violet)
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OTTOVILLE — “If there’s one person that I can help or give encouragement to, that’d make me happy.”

This was Courtney Ehrnsberger of Kalida’s reason for agreeing to be the guest speaker at Ottoville’s 2019 Cancer Walk. Ehrnsberger came to share her own personal story with cancer.

“I felt the lump in the hospital Dec. 11, day one of breast-feeding my twins,” Ehrnsberger began.”

“My actual diagnosis date was New Year’s Eve, Dec. 31, 2018,” she added.

Ehrnsberger’s battle with cancer was only just beginning as she explained to the assembly of attentive students.

“They couldn’t do surgery first because my tumor was larger than normal,” Ehrnsberger explained. “It was eight centimeters, so they had to shrink it first to make sure they could get it all during surgery.”

Her battle with cancer intensified with the arrival of the artillery as Ehrnsberger began chemo treatments. Four of her treatments were taxol which she explained were normally 12 treatments that were condensed into four to battle her aggressive cancer.

While Ehrnsberger finished her last chemo treatment April 26, the cancer isn’t quite ready to raise the white flag.

“I have a double mastectomy on May 31. I have four weeks off from that, then I have to do 33 runs of radiation because my lymph nodes tested positive,” Ehrnsberger detailed.

Despite the long treatments and scary words, Ehrnsberger placed heavy emphasis on her allies in this fight.

“Support is 100 percent everything,” she stressed. “My husband, my mom, my sisters; I actually have a sister who moved up from Georgia with her three sons to live with us and help us out. Family, friends and my community have been amazing.”

Ehrnsberger shared some of her strategy with overcoming her opponent. One key aspect was maintaining the determination and defiance in the face of cancer.

“It’s a mental game as well as physical,” Ehrnsberger revealed. “Mentally, you have to be 100 percent for it. Go in head first and take it on and not back down.”

However, even the strongest of fighters need their respite. Ehrnsberger divulged her most important form of relaxation in regards to her family.

“My two year old son and my twin boys are my go to. I get out of bed every morning for them and snuggle with them at night just to relax,” she explained. “I like snuggles from my dog, too.”

At the end of the day, FCCLA advisor Pam Hickey announced the unofficial total of donations to be over $13,000, effectively reaching the goal of $100,000 overall being donated to the American Cancer Society over 14 years.

The official Cancer Walk donation amount will be announced once all the money has been deposited. The funds will be divided among the Putnam County and Delphos Relay for Life efforts.