St. Louis woman starts charity to give recliners to breast cancer survivors

A St. Louis woman keeps her promise to help breast cancer survivors. Now dozens of women can sleep better after surgery.

Valeda Keys was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010, she had a lumpectomy. A year later, diagnosed again, she had a double mastectomy. When she came home she slept in a recliner. It was so comfortable that Valeda decided to help other women sleep better. She gives them recliners.

Constance Carter received one this summer, "After the surgery, you initially have drainage tubes that are located on both sides, because they had to go back on this side again. It`s really uncomfortable to sleep. You pretty much, you have to sleep on your back."

Valeda bought several out-of-pocket. Generous donors help too. The St. Louis Men's Group Against Cancer assists Valeda's Hope With funds it has raised. She's happy to get two new recliners from Better Office Furniture. Owner Salena Mikos wanted to help so she found two new recliners for Valeda at a major cost reduction. Salena's mother is herself a cancer survivor.

"It just hit home with me what she was doing. That that she was doing it to help those women," said Salena Mikos. "I`m looking for some other good sources to help her either save money on them or get to the point where I can actually donate recliners to her."

"My sleep was great. Because I didn`t have to worry about trying to position myself. I was able to just recline back and fall asleep," said Constance Carter.

Valeda's mother and sister are cancer survivors as well. They all have the BRCA gene mutation. Valeda says her experience has made her even more determined to help others through Valeda's hope.

More information:

Valeda's Hope:
St. Louis Men's Group Against Cancer: