By Lorna Larsen




Shan’s Story

Team Shan…reaching one young women at a time!


#1A. Shan's Story JPG


My daughter, Shanna, friends and family called her Shan, was the happiest during the dog days of summer.  A time when Shan could feel the heat of the sun, swim off the sailboat, join friends at the beach or cottage.  To wake up to blue sky and sunshine was Shan’s happy place.  We still call them ‘Shan Days.’

Shan had a kind heart, gentle spirit and a smile that would radiate across the room.  She was a swimming instructor and figure skating coach who loved to work with children.  She loved life, music, sport and time with family and friends.  Shan had graduated with a visual arts degree and was heading off to teacher’s college when she was diagnosed late with metastatic breast cancer.  

Seven thousand young adults between the ages of 15 and 39 are diagnosed with cancer every year in Canada.  Over 1,100 are young women diagnosed with breast cancer.  In 2005, Shan was one of these statistics.  Shan’s symptoms were misdiagnosed by her health care providers and the cancer had time to spread.  

Living her beliefs, Shan took a positive outlook on the tests and breast cancer treatments.  Sadly, the predictions of hope were not to be realized.  Shan passed away a few months after her diagnosis.  Shan was only 24.

In Shan’s memory, Team Shan Breast Cancer Awareness for Young Women was established to make a difference for young women following in Shan’s footsteps.  Affectionately known as Team Shan, Team Shan is a Canadian charity.  Our purpose is to educate the public, health care professionals and young women about early detection, risk reduction and prevention of breast cancer.

Team Shan reaches thousands of young women each year with their breast cancer risk and breast health information.  Young women have responded positively, taken action and shared knowledge.  Shan’s spirit continues to teach.

Learn more about Team Shan. 

To view the Check Yourself video visit

Please visit Team Shan at and share our site with the special young women in your lives.  

Follow us on Facebook at

Twitter @TeamShan

Instagram at _teamshan  

Contact Team Shan at




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