She is perhaps the unsung hero in Angelina Jolie’s decision to have a double masectomy. Her name is Debbie Martin and she is Angelina’s aunt. Debbie is Angelina’s Mom’s sister. When Angelina’s mother Marcheline (already suffering from cancer), discovered she had a defective gene that is linked to both breast and ovarian cancer, she urged Debbie to take the test that would determine if Debbie had the defective gene as well. Debbie’s test showed she did have the defective gene, so she elected to have her ovaries removed in hopes of side-stepping the same cancer that Marcheline had. No doubt this act of courage helped Angelina with her decision to have a double masectomy.
Debbie did manage to dodge ovarian cancer but unfortunately was not as lucky with breast cancer. She is now stage 4. Normally a very private person, Debbie approved the publication of this story in hopes that it will help others be better informed.
The good news is that Debbie has a fighting chance if we can find her the very best medical care. And you may find this hard to believe hard to believe, but it isn’t that easy for her. Like many people, she has been turned away from numerous life saving programs and clinical trials. My hope is raising awareness to her situation will open some doors for her. If you are anyone you know can provide any suggestions, I am all ears!!!