Calyn Thompson, the morning anchor at NBC affiliate WHO 13 in Des Moines, Iowa, revealed to viewers she is battling breast cancer, a diagnosis she received after covering a story about staying up on regular mammograms.
Thompson, overwhelmed with emotions, made the announcement Wednesday morning on “Today in Iowa” and said she was diagnosed with the disease last November.
“Six months ago, I did an interview during breast cancer awareness month reminding you to stay up to date on your mammograms, little did I know that interview would foreshadow the beginning of my own journey,” Thompson said with her colleagues, co-anchor Justin Surrency and meteorologist Megan Salois, by her side.
As tears streaming down her face, the 28-year-old told viewers if something feels off or not right to get screened. She said she was glad to get the chemotherapy behind her and expressed things are looking good.
“My medical team is confident it is treatable and curable, and I am completely confident in my medical team,” Thompson said. “I have completed six chemotherapy treatments, and it feels so good to have that hurdle behind me.”
Thompson noted rarely journalists make the news about them but said she’s sharing her story to hopefully save a life.
“It was a shock when I found out I had breast cancer,” Thompson said. “And it honestly took me several weeks to process. I asked a lot of ‘whys?’ and have found maybe using my platform here at WHO 13 News to share my story is ‘my why.’ If I can help even one person, it will be worth it.”
While grateful things are trending in the right direction, Thompson admitted the journey wasn’t always easy. She thanked her family, friends, and colleagues at the NBC affiliate and said everyone has been supportive over the last several months.
“There were some mornings I didn’t feel like getting up and going, but you helped me find the strength to get here and deliver the news,” Thompson said to the viewers. “Coming to work every day has been the sense of normalcy and purpose I’ve needed to get through this medical journey.”
Thompson told viewers she will be off-air for a period of time due to an upcoming surgery and vowed she will return.
“I will be back and better than ever,” Thompson said.