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July 19, 2024
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People: Local Woman in Cancer Walk for Sister

Julieann (l) and Arlene on a cruise
Julieann (l) and Arlene on a cruise
April 08, 2007

Arlene Roberts wants to do something to honor her sister, Julieann Faurot, and her painful battle against breast cancer so this October she will walk 39 miles – a marathon and a half -- to raise money for the care of cancer patients.

Arlene and Julieann grew up in Cornwall, the only two children of Beverly and Tony Ruggiero, and after high school they decided to stay. Arlene, whom many people know as the secretary to the Department of Public Works, has three children, and Julieann, whose husband’s Pat works at Bernicker Dodge, has two children and a grandson.

Julieann was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002 and Arlene says she embarked on an aggressive campaign to stop the disease, undergoing a mastectomy, radiation and chemotherapy. The two sisters celebrated when the cancer went into remission and took a cruise with family members in 2005.

Later that year, at Julieann’s 50th birthday party, Arlene thought her sister looked pale. Tests later showed that the cancer had returned and spread to her lungs.

As her sister continues her fight, Arlene stays right by her side, going from doctor to doctor, treatment to treatment, always hoping for the best. “It’s been a rollercoaster,” Arlene says, “I’m with her every step of the way.”

Julieann will be with Arlene, if only in her thoughts, every step of the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer next fall as well. Arlene is training now, which gives her something positive to focus on so that hopelessness will not creep in.

Arlene is hoping to raise $2,000 in her walk and she is asking everyone to support her efforts by making a donation at (search for “Arlene Roberts”) or click here to go directly to her page.

Arlene says that the fight against cancer has made her and her family better people.

“We are a lot closer as a family,” she says. “We used to take for granted that we’d always be together. Now we always get together at the holidays, the whole family, and I call my sister every day and tell her that I love her.”


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