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Breast cancer patient and fire victim helped by co-workers

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — It can be pretty sad when there's an empty chair at the office, especially when a co-worker is gone due to a serious illness. They're on our minds every day. But in tonight's Pass It On, Richard Ransom's playmaker wants to let a co-worker know she's never far from their hearts.

Marion Taylor and Ruth Morgan are part of the office team at the Lewis Thomason law firm.

"Her name is Mary Berringer, and not only is she dealing with a cancer diagnosis, she suffered a fire. Got burned out of her house."

Not just Mary's but 11 other apartments were destroyed. Three other relatives living with Mary were also displaced.

All of this happened just weeks after her diagnosis with breast cancer.

"They have finally gotten her back in another apartment, but she has no income, and she's been with our office for 12 years and now is not able to work."

Mary's short-term disability has dried up, and the office has passed it on many times already.

"We've collected money. We've collected furniture. Several things like appliances. Anything that we can help for her to get furnished for the apartment."

They say Mary is the kind of person you want to help.

"She's just a sweet person. She is. And you know, bad things always happen to sweet people."

It does seem that way sometimes — time to Pass It On.

Marion and Ruth hope this will lift Mary's spirits because she only started chemo and radiation a couple of days ago.

There's $600 from News Channel 3 and $130 from the office, which brings hugs all around.

"We love her and want her to hurry up and come back."

"I do want to come back!" Mary exclaims.

Mary has Stage 1 breast cancer, so doctors are very hopeful that she can beat this. And as you heard her say, she'd like nothing more than to get back to work.