Party marks progress
"I'm doing much better than they say."
That's Patricia Nevins speaking, a year after she was diagnosed with advanced ovarian cancer. Her release party for Saying It With My Heart, the CD she recorded to raise money for research and to help patients and families affected by the disease, took place at the Renaissance Vinoy Resort in St. Petersburg.
Also featured was St. Petersburg gynecologic oncologist Dr. James LaPolla, who discussed new strategies for diagnosis and treatment of the disease. Ovarian cancer often is called the silent killer because many women display no symptoms before their cancer is well advanced.
Nevins, 47, lives in St. Petersburg. She has had major surgery and chemotherapy and is in an experimental treatment program with LaPolla.
Telling about abuse
Some of Tiffany Carr's earliest memories are of her mother being tortured, some so horrific that she has suppressed them.
Carr's determination to help others who suffer physical and mental abuse led her to her career as executive director of the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
In the Palm Court Ballroom of the Renaissance Vinoy Resort in St. Petersburg, Carr expressed trepidation about telling her personal story.
She said she had never done so publicly before.
More than 700 guests attended the annual Peace Breakfast benefiting Community Action Stops Abuse, including Charlie Crist, Florida's governor-elect, and Linda Osmundson, CASA's executive director.
Sponsors including St. Anthony's Health Care, the Broderick/Stross Group, Jim and Suzanne MacDougald, Priority One Financial and George Lewis picked up the tab for the meal and self-parking, and board of trustees chairman John Stross appealed for donations.
Sixteen chairs on a dais represented those in the community who lost their lives to domestic abuse in the past year, Stross said. The oldest was 57; the youngest, a year-old child.
Debs gather for a party
The theme was good clean fun, and St. Petersburg debutantes home for Thanksgiving bonded over making soaps, bath gels and boday lotions at a luncheon party held at Milagros.
Hostesses were Gala Badgley, Nancy Biesinger, C.J. Bruce, Marilyn Hobbs, Maggi McQueen, Nikki McQueen, Nora Pearson, Sally Poynter, Carol Ann Rhodes, Edie Spies and Diane Winning.
A new round of parties for the young women, their friends and families begins in a few weeks.
The debs will be presented at the Coliseum on Dec. 29.