By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Q&A with Brenda Albright, mother of Jamie Cassady
Brenda Albright pictured with her daughter Jamie has been by her side throughout her cancer journey. Photo provided.
Brenda Albright, pictured with her daughter Jamie Cassady, has been by her side throughout her cancer journey. - photo by Photo provided.

Q: What was Jamie like as a child?
A: As a child and as an adult, Jamie was always a self-motivator. Jamie just knew how to set goals that were attainable and would reach them. I’d say she had an “old soul.” She never stressed over things she could not change. Always a very optimistic person who always had great faith.

Q: How has being her mother been a blessing?
A: Being Jamie’s mom has always been easy. Easy in a way that makes me proud. She never gave us trouble or disrespected her family in any way. She was a friend to the ones no one else wanted to be friends with. She was not persuaded to be anything but true to herself; and lived life out loud!

Q: What has been the most inspiring thing about Jamie you have seen despite her cancer diagnosis?
A: Despite Jamie’s cancer diagnosis, her faith knows she carries cancer in her body, but cancer does not carry her. One of many inspiring stories this journey has given me is her first emergency room visit. During chemo one day, she had a reaction to the chemo (so they thought), but it wasn’t. Make a long story short, we were sent to the ER because of severe pain in Jamie’s side and back. After many tests and scans, they never found the source of her pain. They decided to admit her for 24 hours to get her pain under control. The nurse on call that night was very sweet and kind to Jamie. The next day, before she was released from the hospital, still in great pain, her nurse mentioned that she has migraines and understands pain. Before we left her room to go home that day, Jamie asked if she could pray for her. The young nurse started to cry and said, “Yes, yes.” So Jamie and I prayed with her. She marveled at such great faith and concern from a patient younger then herself. So that day, Jamie pushed through her own pain to touch the heart and believe for another. This is only one of many times my daughter has inspired my heart through this journey.

Q: What does it mean to your family to see the community rally and come together for her?
A: No words in any language can express what our heart longs to say. Our family is so humbled and extremely honored to have not just family, friends and church family but a whole community of people who are willing to sacrifice for us. It truly gives us a greater sense of thankfulness. We truly feel undeserving of such sacrifice and support, but yet we are sincerely grateful and blessed. God moves and works in ways we can’t understand. Every good thing comes from above!

Q: How has your church family played a role in this process?
A: There’s not a doubt in my mind we would have been this positive without our church family walking with us every step of the way. Our pastors, Bishop Alton E. Carter and first lady Beth Carter, always kept Jamie, my family and her family faithfully before the congregation to pray every day. I’m so thankful for those who brought meals for months. Gift cards, individual donations at Christmas, Thanksgiving cards and visits, and never forgetting to pray. Many offered to help with taking care of children, rides to and from sports, clean or do laundry. That’s what real family does. Thank you Coastal Cathedral for being God in the flesh to our family.
Recently our church supported and honored Jamie with a “Courage and Canvas” paint party. It was beautifully hosted by Samantha Rowe, Jamie’s sister. Our church welcomed and helped with sending out invites. We had it set up in a huge room at the church with everything needed to create a work of art! It was a full house! Over $2,000 was raised. Jamie shared some of her journey with us and signed each individual painting. What a beautiful fundraiser, and every woman came with great love and support.

Q: What is one thing you want the community to know about Jamie and the Fight Like a Boss event?
A: One thing that stands out the most to me is Jamie’s grateful heart. She has cried many tears, many I’m sure I have never seen and a few I have. She made a statement to me one day that revealed the mercy and goodness of our God. She said, “Ya know, Mom, cancer has never overwhelmed me as much as the generosity of hearts of people.” She cried that day, not because of cancer because she already knows cancer won’t win, but she cried because of the kindness, generosity and true love of people. A people that God chose to use to help make the fight with cancer a whole lot easier. This event has not only made us appreciate true sacrifice, but the appreciation for true love from a community of folks that may or may not know her or her family. It truly takes a village! I must send a big shout-out to Melissa Everett! Your vision was amazing. Thank you for all the months of hard work to make “Jamie’s Fight Our Fight.” This benefit is a miracle, not just for Jamie and her family, but a miracle of hope for a whole community! God makes all things possible when we join our hearts! You are truly Richmond Hill’s hometown hero!

Sign up for our E-Newsletters