, Port Arthur, Texas

October 16, 2012

County court honors breast cancer activists

Josh Brown
The Port Arthur News

BEAUMONT — It’s official: October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Jefferson County.

The commissioner’s court hosted the local group responsible for spreading the word and approved a proclamation to support the national cause at its meeting Monday.

Representatives from the Julie Rogers “Gift of Life” Program, a local cancer awareness organization, gave a short presentation after being recognized by the court.

Several members thanked the commissioners for their support, but County Judge Jeff Branick said it should be the other way around.

“Y’all keep telling us thank you, but it should be us telling you thank you,” he said. “Any commissioner’s court or city anywhere would be appreciative of a group like yours.”

The Julie Rogers “Gift of Life” Program provides free mammograms to women without health insurance and educates people about how to help prevent cancer.

Irene Ramirez, nurse manager of the Charline and Sidney “Chief” Dauphin Cancer Screening and Prevention Center, told the court she sees how this program operates on both multiple ends.

“I see the faces of those women who come to the screenings with tears in their eyes,” she said. “They are so grateful to have the opportunity to have a life-saving mammogram.”

The organization is hosting an awareness “Saturday Night Fever” rally on Oct. 27 in Beaumont with the Pointer Sisters leading the celebration.

The regional criminal lab received a grant with a minimum funding in $10,00 for its 2013 project year, with no matching funds required by the county.

The grant was awarded partly from a competitive federal application and is also funded from state allocations.

The money will go toward new equipment and supplies, according Director Linda Johnson, with the largest sum funding a laboratory information system.

Twitter: @joshnathanbrown