Published October 22, 1998
Volume 6, Number 10

Marzel's Offers Help to Cancer Survivors
Store Offers Support, Products, Information for Mastectomy Patients

Jennifer Milne stands in the retail section of Marzel's, with displays of hats and wigs for breast cancer patients.

By Jay Hipps
Network Editor

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For Jennifer Milne, however, it's a daily event. 

Milne runs Marzel's, a Hacienda store which assists in the recovery process of breast cancer survivors, offering services that include fitting for external prostheses and more. The shop also features a selection of special swimsuits as well as hats and wigs for those currently being treated.

The comfortable store, furnished with soft couches, contrasts sharply with the stark medical settings that breast cancer patients are thrust into. 

"It's a place where women can feel comfortable, and private enough that they can come in and talk," says Milne. "I often like when someone is here who is a survivor of many years and talking with someone who maybe has just had surgery, because they can really share a lot with each other." 

While working with cancer patients on a daily basis might seem stressful, it's a job that Milne loves. 

"I've met some fantastic women in the course of my work," she says. "The outcome in the end is so gratifying, so rewarding, that I just can't imagine doing anything else. I truly enjoy it." 

What may be most remarkable to Milne is the opportunity to observe the emotional and spiritual changes which her customers go through. 

"I think that sometimes there are things in life that are so difficult, that can draw on our strengths and help us become stronger," she notes. "The most common thing I hear is that they've really got their direction now, they really know what's important to them in life." 

In addition to her certifications as a fitter for external prostheses, Milne enjoys providing information to women and community groups. 

"In this day and age, there are so many choices for women to make: choices in their treatment, choices in their outcomewhether they have an implant, an external prosthesis, or whether they don't have anythingthere's a lot to for them to discuss." 

Milne also offers referrals to local support groups and more. She works with the American Cancer Society and other community groups, delivering talks about the many choices that women have, even when faced with one of life's biggest challenges. 


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