Last October, Epoch Lacrosse allowed me to give away a custom, limited edition Breast Cancer Awareness shaft. The staff of Utah Lacrosse News came up with a contest that required people to leave a comment on how breast cancer has effected their family. A vote was taken and Copper Hills Midfielder Sam Taylor was awarded as the winner for this comment:
Hello my name is Sam Taylor and I play for Copper Hills lax and winning this shaft would mean a lot because my mother has been a victim of Breast Cancer twice! she was first diagnosed with BC when I was just two years old but I was to young to really know what was going on.. but she got cleared and beat it and was told it was never coming back! But when I was thirteen years old she was diagnosed again with full blown Breast Cancer and getting the worst stage of cancer you could get! But yet my mom is one of the strongest women ever and she was able to beat it again going through all the chemo therapy and all the radiation test along with being sick all the time! The doctors said that she was very lucky and strong to be able to still be living and a survivor! I am very fortunate she is a survivor because we have had players in the past that have lost a special someone because of Breast Cancer and our team doesn’t stop at all to keep supporting Breast Cancer doing all the BC runs/walks and always wearing pink to show our support for my mom and all the others who have survived and lost their life’s!!
When Sam wrote the comment, he asked his mom to read it and said, ‘Don’t cry’.
“Of course I cried,” said Milonie Taylor, Sam’s mom.
Epoch sent me the actual shaft in December and on Christmas Eve, I was able to spend a few minutes with Sam and Milonie. Milonie was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time in 2008 which was followed by a double mastectomy, radiation and chemo therapy.
“The first time I got it I just kind of went through it and got it done and over with,” said Milonie. “This time I figured there was a reason you get it twice and I know proudly wear it on my wrist. I told myself I needed to be here for my boys.”
Lacrosse has been fundamental in the lives of the Taylors with Sam and little brother Dylan playing constantly for Copper Hills or the Blackhawks. The Copper Hills team has participated in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure for the past three years. The team uses the event for their community service project each year, requiring players to raise fund that are donated to the foundation.
The team is no stranger to the effects breast cancer can have on a community and team. In 2010, former Grizzly midfielder Ben Smith lost his mom to breast cancer. The following year, Grizzly Jaiden Abbott also lost his mom. Ever since then, the Grizzlies have worn pink socks, pink ribbons on their helmets and shooter shirts as well as the slogan ‘Never Forget’ on their shooter shirts.
“I think the boys have a little better understanding about the disease than some of their counterparts,” said Copper Hills Head Coach Matt Evans.
The shaft features pink coloring throughout including a pink Epoch logo, the motto, ‘Losing isn’t an option” and a pink ribbon.
Best of luck this season to the Taylors and the Copper Hills community!