As doctors wheeled 75-year-old Mary Kay Duda into surgery for a pancreatic tumor, she turned to her daughter, Katie, and said, “See you on the flip side.”
Katie Duda, 36, rolled her eyes at the memory, humorous now that her mother is nearing two years cancer-free. At the time, though, the thought of losing her mother was unbearably real.
Mary Kay Duda says she’s one of the lucky unlucky ones. Unlucky in that the tumor growing inside her enveloped the head of her pancreas. Unlucky in that one Las Vegas surgeon declined to operate because the tumor was so large.