Meet Janna Douma: Cancer Survivor and Day of Hope Advocate

For a large portion of the community, cancer is a disease that impacts generations. For Janna Douma, it was no different.

Janna’s exposure to cancer began when her father went to the doctor to check on several spots on his ear, eyelids, and nose. The skin cancer was so extensive that a portion of his nose had to be removed and— amazingly—a new nose utilizing skin from his forehead was crafted. At his death in 2011, his autopsy revealed he also had prostate cancer.

After her dad’s funeral services, Janna’s mother revealed to her that she had tumors visible along her breasts. Recognizing the severity of this revelation, Janna immediately took her mom to the doctor and she was diagnosed with Stage 4 breast cancer two weeks later. At that point in the disease, the cancer had metastasized throughout her body. Never receiving mammograms throughout her life, Janna’s mom was given 18 months to live. Janna undertook caregiving duties and used this precious time to bond with her mom during the difficult season prior to her passing.

Seeing the untimely deaths of her parents, Janna’s resolution was strengthened to take testing seriously. “I am different from my parents, in that I do go to the doctor regularly, and I do get tests regularly,” Janna stated. After her annual mammogram in 2017, she was called back to have a biopsy. A visit with Monica Rocco, MD, FACS, at Mission Hope Health Center, brought the news that her breast cancer was in stage 1 with the aggressiveness of the cancer at Stage 2.

“From the moment I had my mammogram up until today, the people at Mission Hope have been so very kind, so very caring, treating me with the utmost respect, concern, and love,” Janna said, reflecting on her experience. “Mission Hope is very special and I will continue to support it and be involved with the work there.”

Being true to her word, Janna was a visible representative during Day of Hope 2018, being featured in several news stories and allowing her cancer journey to have a redemptive element. “I was in the grocery store after Day of Hope and the cashier recognized me from a story. She said, ‘I had been putting off my mammogram but when I saw you on the news I made my appointment the next day!’” Janna excitedly shared.

Janna is now cancer free and plans on participating again in Day of Hope on April 10, 2019. You are invited to join Janna and our spirited teams of survivors and volunteers as we bring hope to our community.