At the Select Board meeting Monday night, all members of the board, along with Town Administrator Paul Sagarino, Assistant Town Administrator John Danizio and Select Board Office Manager Lyn Mills, wore custom shirts in support town employee Jennifer Ryan, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer. The shirts read, “In this town no one fight alone.”
Ryan, an accounting specialist at Burlington Town Hall, doesn’t need a calculator to add up all of her friends, family, colleagues and the townspeople who are behind her in her fight.
“The support alone is so wonderful and I’m so grateful for all that everyone has not only shown me but my kids and husband,” Ryan said. “Between the food train and apparently there is a fundraiser, I’m so emotionally overwhelmed and grateful! I truly work for the best town and have the best friends and family around. I have a fight ahead of me but I know I have the support of this town on my side.”
In the beginning of October, Ryan discovered a lump. She followed through with mammograms and found she had two separate lumps, one was in the ductile and the other in the tissue.
“I was working and had the best of support from a lot of my coworkers who I needed for help and support,” Ryan said. ” I then found out they found a third mass, which is when I decided to have a double mastectomy. I have three daughters and just went through a year of treatment for my mom, so there was no way I was going to take the risk of going through it again or having to have a second surgery.”
For the next year, Ryan will require chemotherapy. She says the “overwhelming” support she feels will give her strength.
There will be a comedy night fundraiser for Ryan held at the Billerica Elks on Saturday, Jan. 7., starting at 7 p.m. There will also be music, food, drinks and raffles.