HILL AIR FORCE BASE -- With the help of a few bald co-workers, Edna Maggard says she will fight to survive cancer until the bitter end.
Maggard, 54, was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer on March 27 this year.
The Roy resident, who works in the Missions Support Branch of the Ogden Air Logistics Center at Hill Air Force Base, suffered through the winter with a bad chest cold before doctors finally discovered a mass on her right lung.
"I had been having really bad coughing spells. I had asthma and a hard time breathing," she said. "So I went to the doctor and had a chest X-ray. After the X-ray, (the doctor) came out and said, 'I'm sorry, but I think you have lung cancer.'aa"
Less than two weeks after her diagnosis, Maggard began cancer treatment, which included chemotherapy and radiation.
"I had 30 radiation sessions, and I had chemotherapy for two months," she said. "It was horrible. I've never been so sick in my life."
After taking some much needed time off, Maggard came back to her job at Hill in July. She was left hairless from her cancer treatments.
To show support and help ease Maggard's insecurity about being bald, eight of her co-workers decided to dust off a pair of hair clippers.
Elizabeth Hughes, Dennis Jones, Lt. Brenton Glaus, Robert Gardner, Sara Drake, Lt. T.J. Anderson, Dave Gallegos and Mike Counsellor all shaved their heads clean in support of Maggard.
"My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was 11," Drake said. "So this is extremely close to my heart and something I wanted to do for my mom back then. It's an awareness thing."
Gardner said he and the other seven members of the bald-headed crew were all behind the idea wholeheartedly.
"We really didn't have to think twice about it," he said. "We just wanted to do anything possible to help."
Maggard said the act gave her a much needed boost of inspiration.
"It made me feel loved, it made me feel special," she said. "It made me think to myself, 'I can do this.'aa"
But the support hasn't stopped with new haircuts.
Maggard's co-workers are holding a special fundraising event Sept. 17 at the Rainbow Saloon in Roy to help pay for her medical bills.
The event will run from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. and will feature live music and a raffle.
A bank account accepting donations also has been set up at America First Credit Union as the "Edna Maggard Cancer Fund."
As for Maggard's prognosis, she isn't quite sure what her chances of survival are, but she will be examined by doctors again in September, giving her a better idea of her condition.
"All I have been told at this point is that people with this cancer at this stage, usually only 20 percent of them live even 10 years," she said. "But I am going to keep fighting tooth and nail to the end."