Pink Warrior Angels hold luau, honor cancer survivors

By BRITTANY FHOLER 
Cove Leader-Press 

Pink Warrior Angels held a luau to raise funds and to honor local cancer survivors at the Copperas Cove Civic Center on Saturday evening. 
The event featured a live DJ and dancing by the Poly-Mic Dance Group, who performed dances from the islands of Samoa, Tahiti, Guam and New Zealand, among others. Some audience members also learned some dance moves from the dancers as well. Tickets for the event were $25 per person or $45 per couple, and $10 for children under the age of 10. Just under 200 people attended the luau, according to Pink Warrior Angel co-founder Julie Moser. 
In addition to music and dancing, guests enjoyed the roasted pig, teriyaki chicken, Hawaiian macaroni salad, white rice, Filipino Lumpia and Korean chap chae noodles. Except for the pig, all of the food was made with the help of Editha Natividad, with EZ Pig Roast & Catering roasting the pig.
There were several different door prizes, worth anywhere from $45 to $160 plus a mega door prize with several different gift cards totaling $315. 
During 2017, Pink Warrior Angels raised over $200,000, allowing the group to be able to give away $5,000 per month during 2018.
The organization, founded in 2015 by Moser and Jen Reynolds, helps women who are going through breast cancer, pairing “Angels” who have finished their cancer treatments and surgeries, with “Warriors” who have been recently diagnosed. Reynolds, who lives in New Braunfels, shared that the group helps out both emotionally and financially. 
“There’s not enough attention given to what women go through after breast cancer,” Reynolds said. “The financial part does support the emotional side. There’s a huge burden and emotional burden on a woman who’s going through breast cancer treatment and she can’t afford her bills.”
The organization has helped with paying for gas, groceries, medical bills, car payments and even utility bills or helping with funeral costs if needed, Reynolds said. 
The purpose of the luau was to fundraise but also to honor survivors, including some who are still going through treatment, by “giving them a gift and a night out where they don’t have to focus on cancer and not feeling well,” Reynolds said. 
During the event, in between announcing winners for door prizes, Moser and Reynolds presented gifts from Kendra Scott Jewelry to women who were at the event and had fought cancer, including Stephanie Orszag and Dawn Hale. 
Orszag reached out when she was first diagnosed in July 2016. She ended up moving to Ohio and receiving treatment there, with her last day of treatment on February 2, 2017. She said she came to celebrate being one year out from her treatment. She said the luau was the second event for Pink Warrior Angels she had attended but that she hoped to get more involved. 
Hale, who won a few of the door prizes, said she had been introduced to the organization first through her granddaughter Kaydence Weary’s role as a member of Rabbit Fest Royalty in May 2016. It wasn’t until she was diagnosed with cancer herself in January 2017 that she reached out in a different way. Last week marked one year since her diagnosis, she said. Hale, who bought tickets for her whole family, said she thought what the organization did was awesome, especially the way they help financially. There is no red tape to jump through, which is what makes it even sweeter, Hale said. 
“You can just say I need help, so I think that’s great,” Hale said. 
Hale added that there is also that moral support available through talking online and asking for prayers. 
For more information on future events supporting the Pink Warrior Angels, find them on Facebook or visit their website: pinkwarriorangels.org. 

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