99-Year-Old Breast Cancer Survivor Inspires Others

By Stephanie Parkinson

October 1, 2013 Updated Oct 1, 2013 at 5:33 PM EDT

LEO, Ind. (21Alive) - October is breast cancer awareness month. In a special 21Alive I Wear Pink report we share the story of a 99-year-old breast cancer survivor who is now an inspiration to others.

Anna Barb Delagrange has experienced nearly a century of life, but during that time she's also seen the darker side of life.

"They said I had cancer in my one breast," said Delagrange.

It's a word no woman ever wants to hear, but nearly two decades after her fight she remains cancer free.

"I think I've survived it, and it hasn't never come back. And I just thank the Lord that I'm as good as I am," said said Delagrange.

Delagrange has several family members fighting the deadly disease right now, including a niece who's undergoing treatment for breast cancer.

"Our family looks at her, and her strength, and her inspiration, and her faith, and we know it can be done," said Wendy Perkins, granddaughter.

"You have to encourage them, and not cry and carry on, and you have to be happy and go lucky," said Delagrange.

As Delagrange encourages her family, her family also makes sure to be there for her. They often take her on trips. Lately she visited Niagara Falls for the first time, and also went out west to Colorado. Her granddaughter says next on the travel agenda is Alaska.

"It gives her something to look forward to. You know, it gives her, instead of just sitting around this house just, you know, waiting to die she can be out there and see the world. And we love to take her," said Perkins. "I think it's a blessing we've had her in our lives this long, and, you know, we do have a good time. We have a great time when we're together."

We asked Anna Barb what the secret is to making it to 99. She says she takes life one day at a time, and makes sure to laugh a lot.

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