Jill Jorolemon Legacy Award Winner: Heather Chemotti
Thrilled to honor Heather Chemotti with the Jill Jorolemon Legacy of Commitment Award at the 2017 CNY Race for the Cure!
In July of 2011, Heather Chemotti went for her annual screening mammogram and then went on about her life. One day later, she received the call that no woman one ever wants receive. She has just been diagnosed with breast cancer at age 39. Heather showed incredible courage during her cancer journey, undergoing a double mastectomy and completing both chemotherapy and radiation. With treatment behind her, Heather turned her attention to helping others. She dedicates her time to being an advocate for breast cancer…losing her mother to breast cancer in June of 2015, underscored her commitment to breast cancer research and advocacy. Her personal mission is to serve others who are afflicted with cancer, offering mentoring and emotional support. Heather has been a Komen Race for the Cure Team Captain since 2010 and served on the Board of the CNY Komen Affiliate. Heather, on her own time, provides all the finance direction to Cancer Connects, manages the financial parameters of Breast Care Partners, LLC and is a Co-Chair of the Annual HOA Survivor Day Celebration. She performs her volunteer work selflessly and will not accept any recognition or compensation for her time. Heather is a wife and mother of two young daughters, now aged thirteen and nine and active member of her Parish.
Jill’s story is all too common, but her spirit was extraordinary. After being diagnosed with breast cancer in December 2003 at the age of 28, undergoing a mastectomy and completing both chemotherapy and radiation, Jill Jorolemon started back to teaching in September of 2004 and was looking forward to having a “normal life” back. That didn’t last long. Just two short months later, the cancer had recurred in her liver. She immediately started treatment. Jill lost her battle December 2006 at the age of 31.
Jill Jorolemon faced her disease head on and focused with great determination on the silver lining, and through that positive attitude and her unwavering faith, she touched a huge number of lives, including those here at Komen CNY. Above all else, Jill was the most amazing mother to her daughter, Alison, the most loving wife to her husband Chris and a shining star to her enormous circle of friends, students, and family.
The ray of sunshine that she was, Jill eagerly jumped into action on behalf of Komen for the Cure and she did so with love, determination, compassion and generosity. When she decided to support Komen and its ideals, she was there, regardless of whether she was recovering from exhausting treatments or in pain as a result of her disease.
And so, at Komen CNY and at the Race for the Cure, Jill’s presence is everywhere and will only build over time. Each year when we round up race participants, volunteers and donors, Jill will be the fuel behind that effort. She is forever a part of the electricity that powers our efforts, where people share their experiences and help each other get through the day. And every year when we lace up our sneakers to be a part of Race for the Cure to benefit Komen, Jill will give us the strength and determination to get to those next distance markers.
With this award we are keeping Jill’s legacy alive. We honor Jill. Her name is synonymous with commitment.