First Lady Casey DeSantis announced a $100 million initiative for cancer research and care in Gov. Ron DeSantis’s 2022-23 budget proposal on Dec. 7, 2021. Source: Screenshot/Florida Channel
Florida First Lady Casey DeSantis received her last treatment of chemotherapy for breast cancer, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Thursday. It’s been almost five months since her diagnosis was made public by the governor’s office in early October.
The governor updated Floridians and the press on her treatment milestone at the end of a Thursday press conference focused on funding workforce education programs in Florida.
“Just wanted to let everybody know that the First Lady — yesterday, we completed the final chemotherapy treatment that she has to do,” he said. The announcement was met with a round of applause from the audience.
“You know, it’s not the most fun thing to see someone go through, but at the end of the day, she’s fought really hard. We think that she’s responded very well,” DeSantis said. “I mean, still got more stuff to do. But that’s a big milestone, because it’s nasty stuff when they’re doing that.”
“And so, I just want everyone to know that she got through that,” he told the audience and the press. “She ran that gauntlet. She’s doing well, and we look forward to continue to have good news over the ensuing weeks and months.”
He then ended the press conference and did not take questions.
Following the press conference, Christina Pushaw, the governor’s press secretary, tweeted: “@GovRonDeSantis just announced that @FLCaseyDeSantis completed her final chemo treatment yesterday and is doing well! Thanks everyone for your prayers.” Pushaw ended the tweet with a heart emoji and a praying hands emoji.
Last week, during the annual State of the State address that kicks of Florida’s legislative session, Gov. DeSantis stated that “2022 is the year she (Casey) will be cancer free.”
The first time Casey DeSantis opened up about her breast cancer diagnosis and her personal experience with the disease was in early December, when she hosted a roundtable highlighting her husband’s budget proposal to increase cancer research funding.
During the December roundtable, she urged Floridians to seek early cancer screenings if they feel something is not right.
“I didn’t feel anything with breast cancer — I didn’t physically feel anything. But, internally, something was telling me that something wasn’t right,” Casey DeSantis said then.
“My OBGYN at the time, she just told me, ‘Well, I don’t feel anything, I think you’re pretty much good to go.’ But that kept nagging at me. There was something internal that said, ‘I just can’t accept inaction.’ So I called back, I called back and, after a month, I finally got in and got the mammogram screening, and that’s when they found it,” she said during the December roundtable.
“And my doctor said, ‘That could have saved your life,’ and, hopefully, it did save my life,” she said at the time.
In the midst of her diagnosis and treatments, the Florida First Lady has continued being an active figure in Florida policy and politics.
Just last week, she headed a roundtable discussion about drug use and abuse education for Florida’s schools, announcing informational toolkits and assemblies to warn students about the dangers of using drugs.
She’s also worked to expand the Hope Ambassadors program, which designed to encourage students to promote student mental health and an overall supportive learning environment with their peers by serving as mentors and working together through charity events.
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