Paqui Kelly gives ABC57 a tour of the Comprehensive Breast Center
ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind. -- Saturday's Game Day Chase is a benefit for the Kelly Cares Foundation, which was started by Brian and Paqui Kelly. Kelly Cares helped open the Paqui and Brian Kelly Comprehensive Breast Center at the St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Mishawaka.
We asked Paqui if she ever thought she would see her name on a breast center.
"If you would have told me 5 years ago that this is where we would be I wouldn't have thought we would come this far, but we've been able to do a whole lot of things in 5 years and the powers that be and that was part of his plan. It's special and empowering it really is," said Paqui.
She and her husband, Notre Dame Head Football Coach Brian Kelly, were on hand in July for the opening of the center.
Not only does the center bear her picture and her name, it holds memories of when she was battling breast cancer.
A two time cancer survivor, she knows the fear and uncertainty of sitting in a waiting room.
"I had a roommate in college that came with me to these appointments," said Paqui.
Technology has changed since her diagnosis years ago. The digital 3D mammogram can help spot and detect the tiniest and most elusive breast cancer tissue.
"It is challenging but we have found cancer that we would have not seen if did not have that new technology," said Dr. Brett Stephens of the St. Joseph Regional Medical Center.
Stephens says they have only had it a few weeks and it has already proven its value.
"Five to six women diagnosed with this new technology," said Stephens.
Cutting edge technology takes money-and lots of it.
"This is your high end mammography," said Paqui.
Kelly Cares contributed $250,000 to help acquire the new machine.
They aren't done yet.
She wants you to attend the Game Day Chase, a fundraiser on Saturday.
"If you are here for the football game, it doesn't start until 8:30. So we are going to give you something healthy to do which is go and run a 5 or 10 K," said Paqui. "Running is good for your health. And you don't have to win, like anything else - try, attempt and finish. That's my goal - to finish."
The money raised at the Game Day Chase will help fund projects supported by Kelly Cares.