Every year, the National Football League and NFL Players Association support October's National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It is a campaign often mocked as an underhanded attempt to appeal to women and everywhere you look you're likely to see pink shoes, pink ribbons, pink wristbands and -- of course! -- pink merchandise for sale.
Melissa Galvin-Dobson, a former San Francisco 49ers cheerleader and one of the hosts of the the 49ers Total Access, was one of the biggest stories behind the NFL's breast cancer awareness campaign, A Crucial Catch.
Galvin-Dobson lost her mother to breast cancer and six months after her mother's passing, Galvin-Dobson discovered a lump in her breast while breast feeding her infant daughter.
"It became my mission at that point," the former Gold Rush cheerleader says now, "to send a message that whatever you're going through in life, you're going to get through it."
Galvin-Dobson and her husband, Patrick Dobson, had two young children, 4-year-old Stella and 8-year-old Brady. She was first diagnosed in 2011. Galvin-Dobson went through eight rounds of chemotherapy, a massive surgery. Subsequently, she endured 30 rounds of radiation and then another massive surgery. Although she was valiantly heading into round two of her fight, she succumbed to the disease yesterday.
It is a sad day for the 49er family, but she fought cancer every step of the way and made an effort to educate other women about early detection. Galvin-Dobson supported the NFL's campaign to raise awareness. A Crucial Catch supports the American Cancer Society's Community Health Advocates National Grants for Empowerment (CHANGE) program. This program provides outreach and breast cancer screenings to women who need them.
Here is a glimpse of 49ers, Melissa Galvin-Dobson. She fought tirelessly to encourage early diagnosis for other women and endured a valiant fight of her own along the way. In many ways, her spirit lives on and the writers and fans at Niners Nation hope you encourage your loved ones about early detection and breast cancer screenings.
Click here to see Galvin's VIDEO.