Thursday, October 23, 2008

She Said She Had Breast Cancer~But, She LIED!

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and I have been pondering what kind of post I should make, recognizing this important cause.
This story hit my gut so hard, I decided this was the one I should post.
Please support all survivors, victims, sisters, friends, aunts, husbands, brothers, mothers and daughters who have been touched by this dreaded, yet common disease.
How do you feel about this fraud? I find it so disturbing, I cannot even come up with a good excuse for this person, who claims to be a victim.
Here is a look at the amazing, awful story.~ My synopsis follows~
Meet Suzy Bass (pictured left), a popular high school math teacher who had her students, her friends, her co-workers and her family convinced she had stage IV breast cancer.
She claimed it had spread to her shoulder, her bones, her heel and that Chemotherapy no longer worked. The truth? She was making it all up! She was perfectly healthy and duped everyone, even her own family.
How shameful is that? Wonder if Karma ever entered her mind? What a sad situation.
Disgusting, morbid, sad and incredible. I pray for her. She is one mentally ill woman, obviously.
Read the COMPLETE story, courtesy of Glamour Magazine. brilliantly written by the author Erin Zammett Ruddy
Suzy Bass had less than a year to live. The Knoxville, Tennessee, high school math teacher was battling stage IV breast cancer, and it had spread to her shoulder and heel. Chemotherapy no longer worked; an experimental bone marrow therapy she’d tried as a last resort appeared futile. Her students and colleagues were devastated. Bass, then 41, was a popular newcomer to the picturesque private Webb School near the Smoky Mountains that fall of 2007. “Ms. Bass was the cool teacher,” says Michaelan Moore, 18, who was a junior in Bass’s Algebra II class. “Everyone just loved her immediately. We could tell her anything.”

Because Bass had recently moved to Knoxville and was single, two Webb staffers—Julieanne Pope, 43, and Terri Ward, 51—became her part-time caregivers. “I left my cell phone on my nightstand every night in case she needed anything,” says Ward, the dean of faculty. “On bad days I’d tell her, ‘We are going to attack this. We are going to fight.’” When Bass was too sick to teach, they’d cover her classes. And they kept a steady stream of casseroles and smoothies going to her condo. “We would visit and she’d be shaking, pale and so sick,” says Pope, Webb’s technology coordinator. At school Bass would cover her head—bald from chemotherapy—with a knit cap, and limp from the tumor in her foot.

In October Webb students and faculty put together a team for Komen Knoxville Race for the Cure to benefit the local breast cancer charity affiliate. “Suzy’s Crew for the Cure,” they called it. But when race day came, Bass was too weak to even walk. “She just met us at the finish line so she could cross it,” says Pope. As Bass’s condition worsened, she sent an e-mail to Pope thanking her for her support and friendship, and in an attached document, she outlined her last wishes. She asked that she be cremated, her ashes scattered in the Cayman Islands, with no tears: “I want whoever is sprinkling to be enjoying friends, family and loved ones, laughing and just having fun,” she said.

Inspired by Bass’s brave battle, Webb’s students dedicated their prom fund-raiser to her, raising money for Komen for the Cure by selling T-shirts bearing the charity’s logo. “Everyone wanted to support Ms. Bass,” says Eliza Dawson, 17, a student who helped coordinate the event. The students planned to present a check to the director of Komen’s Knoxville branch—with Bass by their side—during prom, and their efforts were covered by the local newspaper.

A week before the big dance, though, the school received a series of troubling phone calls. The callers were intimately familiar with Bass’s devastating saga. But they weren’t upset about her deadly illness—they were furious.


The Fitness Diva said...

Wow, fascinating story! I'm shocked at the lengths she went to in order to fake the effects of chemotherapy.
That's just truly sick!

I would have more sympathy for her being mentally ill, if not for the fact that she scammed so many people in the process, not just once, but THREE times. To me, that's not so forgivable. What's worse is that what she did altered the ability to trust and be giving for quite a few people.... some would turn cold after experiencing something like this.
I just hope that all the people she affected keep the loving, giving natures they had before she came along.

OhYeahBabe said...

OMG - if anyone didn't read the whole news article, it's an incredible story. I don't even know what to say! The magnitude of her lies make Heidi Diaz' lies look lame in comparison!

I agree with you, Nancy, that this woman has to be seriously mentally ill.

Lora said...

What a tragic and sad story! There are stories even more horrible (fake cancer stories that involve children) than Ms. Bass, I'm sorry to say.

Let us pray, Ms. Bass gets the help she needs.

earthlingorgeous said...

This left me in awe, how could she pull it off for such a period of time and how come nobody was able to tell that she was lying to them. Thanks for sharing this story.

Anonymous said...

Austin Girl & Fat Bastard stopped by to say hello.

Hope all is well. Crazy story about the breast cancer lier!

Vera said...

OMG! That was a very complicated lie to weave! I'm going to follow the link and read on. thanks!

Anonymous said...

Disgusting! Thanks for posting this.


I cannot believe someone would actually do this! How awful and she definately needs some mental health help. Maybe she wanted attention but I think there are much better ways of getting it.

The Fitness Diva said...

You tell 'em, Heidi! ;)

Preston said...

What a horribly sad story and what a sad and disturbed woman. I hope she gets the help she so obviously needs.

Anonymous said...

Wow! My first thought is, "How does she live with herself?" - my second thought, is the realization, that people like this - don't even think about that.
It's really just scary

Preston said...

Nancy Ellyn, I've given you an award over at my blog. Go check it out!

Lilly's Life said...

Makes you wonder doesnt it. I was duped by a con artist and I tell the feeling of being lied to and misled and the whole breach of trust is the most painful think I have ever gone through . Worst still if a stranger did it you culd understand to a degree but when its someone you love and you think they love you and they con you its horrific. She is not mentally ill she is a psychopath without question. She will do it again and again.

By the way I found your blog through Prestons blog and I read that YOU are a great JACKSON BROWNE fan. So am I and have been for nearly 30 years. I named my dog Jackson as a teenager and if I had had a son he was going to be Ethan but I had a girl so my sister called her son Ethan instead. Love him and every time he is in Australia I go and see him. Love the photo of you together. Nice to find another fan!!!

K said...

I think that this woman had to obviously be feeling neglected by others to say the least. I hope she gets mental help, and I hope she lives forever so she can remember what she did to others.

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