MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Every Tuesday, as part of our Community Changers series, we highlight organization making Memphis better. This week, we caught up with a group that uplifts the soul during a dark time.
At the age of twenty-seven Jasmine Smith, a mother of four, was diagnosed with breast cancer after discovering a lump during a self breast exam.
Veronico Miller-Johnson is Jasmine’s mother.
After finishing chemo, three to six months, she did a double mastectomy. She had both breasts removed. We thought that was going to be the end of that,” Veronico said. “About a year and a half later, it came back in her liver, lungs and eventually traveled to her brain.”
The family knew Jasmine’s time was limited. That’s when Pink Ain’t Whatcha Think came into their lives. They’re a non profit organization that helps women and men who have been diagnosed with breast cancer.
Vance Stacks Jr. is the founder and breast cancer survivor himself.
“He [Vance’s doctor] said, breast cancer happens in men as well. Not as often. One percent of men will get it. You are that one percent,” Vance said.
Vance had numerous surgeries, rounds of chemo and radiation. He knew what Jasmine was going through. His organization provides blankets for cancer patients going through chemotherapy.
They also offer ultimate wishes to terminal patients, provide toys to children of parents who are going through treatment and help families financially with final arrangements. They did all that for client number one, Jasmine Smith and her family.
For Jasmine’s ultimate wish, she wanted to go to the casinos in Mississippi.
“I reached out to my donors and different people. Memphis Police Department showed up and showed out. Tunica’s sheriff’s department sent fifteen squad cars,” Vance said. “Horseshoe Casino sent a limo for her family. She was so happy.
“I can’t thank them enough for being there for her and getting her through that difficult time,” Veronico said. “Mr. Stacks makes sure to check on me. Still calls and checks on me. [I] Really appreciate it.”
Jasmine passed away in May 2022. This will be their first holiday season without her.
This is why our anonymous donor wanted to give Pink Ain’t Whatcha Think a thousand dollars.
Because when you know time is limited, bringing everyone together for one last celebration is important for the soul.
A true Community Changer.