BUDDY CHECK 3: Nixa, Mo. couple shares emotional roller coaster of fighting breast cancer

Published: Mar. 3, 2020 at 5:53 PM CST
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It's time to text, call, or just schedule a visit with your buddy to remind her to do her self breast exam. It's a system that can detect cancer at its earliest most treatable stage. Unfortunately that's not the way it happened for a Nixa woman.

You can see and hear signs of a hard-fought battle everywhere in the Davidson household. Bob Davidson is a musician and wrote a song about when "faith walks in, fear walks out." By faith, this Nixa family has just come through a terrifying year that started when the heart of their family was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer that had already spread to other parts of her body. Judy Davidson said when she was first diagnosed she would look at her children and wonder if she was going to be there to raise them and watch her grandchildren grow.

With a grandbaby in her arms and still raising two kids of their own, Judy and her husband teamed up to face the fight ahead of them, acknowledging it has been an emotional roller coaster. Battles they quickly learned that would go well beyond surgery, chemo and radiation. Even with insurance, most families falter under the weight of medical bills and every day living expenses when they're fighting cancer. Susan Smith, manager of Cox Health's breast cancer clinic sees the struggle.

"You have high deductibles, can't afford otherwise, plus 20% of your treatment you're talking $100,000 treatment," said Smith.

And when one or both incomes are lost during the battle to beat cancer, the stress can be overwhelming and even sabotage recovery. That's what took Bob Davidson to the Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks, where he found immediate help for his wife. Bob Davidson said he couldn't believe there was that much love coming from somebody who never knew her.

Helping families like the Davidsons is what BCFO has been doing for 20 years now. The foundation helps local patients with everything from groceries to house payments, from gas cards to utilities. BCFO's founder,

"We're local with no government affiliation so we can reach out to families and meet their needs," said Mary Beth O'Reilly.

"What they did for us, we could breathe almost, we got a breath we were so taken back, they took stress off of us so we could focus on treatments," said the Davidson.

Life is more normal for the Davidsons these days. Judy now has regular pet scans, and the last one was cancer free. An answer, she says to their continued prayers.

"We gave it all too God and that's where we are today, what brought us through is our faith," said Judy Davidson.

If you haven't signed up for the Buddy Check 3 program yet, click

. You'll receive a free welcome packet for you and your buddy.