WASHINGTON, D.C. – July 8, 2011 – Susan G. Komen for the Cure® founder and CEO Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker issued this statement following the death of former First Lady Betty Ford. Mrs. Ford died today at the age of 93.
“On behalf of the entire Susan G. Komen for the Cure family, we mourn the passing of Betty Ford, widow of President Gerald Ford. Betty Ford opened the door for millions of women when she candidly acknowledged her breast cancer diagnosis at a time when we didn’t talk about this disease and untold numbers of women suffered in silence. She showed the world that breast cancer could be faced with courage, with humor and with great dignity. Like so many, I relied on her advice and wisdom, and I will be forever grateful that she gave life, hope and voice to this movement and to generations of women to come. She was a mentor, a friend and a woman whose example we all strive to follow,” said Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker, founder and CEO of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Diagnosed with breast cancer in 1974, Mrs. Ford was widely praised for publicly acknowledging her diagnosis and was an early supporter of Komen for the Cure’s work to raise awareness about breast cancer.