COVENTRY— A local woman was chosen to model in the 2014 “Celebrate Hope, Celebrate Life” calendar, created by the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation.
Coventry resident Corey Calligano, 31, was approached by fellow breast cancer survivor Mandy Zito, who works as the Young Survivors Program Coordinator at the foundation.
“I met Mandy a few years back, she was my daughters’ preschool teacher and she liked my kids and they loved her so we kept in touch after she left teaching,” she explained.
Calligano said she was flattered when she was asked to be one of 12 women featured in next year’s calendar — posing for the month of June.
“It was a little overwhelming however because I didn’t have a lot of hair at the time and I didn’t feel great about myself but I felt flattered and I said ‘of course I’ll do it,’” she remembered.
In September of 2012, she said she was diagnosed with breast cancer after noticing a lump one day.
Following her diagnosis she underwent five months of chemotherapy, a lumpectomy, which removed 18 of her lymph nodes and six-and-a-half weeks of daily radiation therapy.
“I’m currently doing Herceptin treatments so that’s every three weeks and that will be until December,” she said. “Then I’ll be on Tamoxifen for five years.”
Calligano said her three children — ages nine, seven and two — kept her going, especially when staying positive was difficult.
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