Cancer survivor featured nationally after photo of her Blazers' sign goes viral
Overnight, Haley Bellows became the girl with the sign. Known locally for her Eff Cancer shirts, she became a national sensation after a photo of her at the April 27 Portland Trail Blazers game went viral. Her sign read If I can beat cancer, Rip City can beat the Rockets. #11daysCancerFree.
Since then, shes appeared on numerous local television shows, was featured on Good Morning America and on numerous blogs, including the Bleacher Report.
Its been crazy, but its been really good, said Bellows, a junior at George Fox University. Its really overwhelming, but in a good way. Im not someone who likes to draw attention to myself so I mean it when I say I really just wanted on the Jumbotron once.
But after Mike Barrett, Blazers broadcaster, Tweeted a picture of Bellows deeming it his favorite sign of the night, the publicity took off. The next day, she said she was hounded by various reporters and stations all wanting her to be on air, including a Tweet at 2 a.m. soliciting her appearance for a 4:30 a.m. show in Portland. She turned that offer down.
Its settled down since then, Bellows said. Ive accepted my social media will never be the same. I have hundreds and hundreds of new followers and I have no idea who they are.
With her newfound fame, shes decided to use it to promote her new business selling her Eff Cancer shirts.
Its been really cool to be able to promote that, she said. The news station said, `Yeah, if you want you can wear your shirt. So we made a Rip City edition shirt.
We being Bellows and her new printing partner, Newbergs Rendered.
(Theyve) really taken off with it, she said. This included new designs, styles of shirts and coloring.
Since finding out shes in remission a little more than two weeks ago, Bellows has decided to start helping others with her shirt sales.
Every month Im going to highlight a different cancer patient and donate $5 of every sale to that patient, Bellows said. Just since remission, I want to help people in the way Eff Cancer helped me.
The details of her new program arent all worked out, but the first patient is her infant cousin who is fighting Retinoblastoma, a cancer of the retina.
Right now, Bellows is full of ideas and dreams for her company. She said its hard because she still has a year of school left, but shes looking forward to returning to normal, helping others and getting back to the things she loves.
Its exciting. Theres always a wariness of its recurrence, but Im just so excited, she said. The main thing Im really excited about is Im really excited to start focusing on school again. And Im excited to get active again.
To learn more about Eff Cancer, visit Bellows site at www.effcancermovement.org.