LOUISVILLE, Ky — The Brown Cancer Center hosted an event called “Capturing the Moment,” which celebrates and supports families living with a cancer diagnosis.

What You Need To Know

  • Professional photographers volunteer their talents for an empowering photoshoot

  • Forty families living with a cancer diagnosis took part

  • The event is meant to empower families during a very difficult time

A cancer diagnosis brings patients months and often years of difficult moments, but a tradition at UOfL Health reminds those living with cancer they are always beautiful no matter what.

Living with cancer is filled with moments: the diagnosis, the treatment, the loss of hair or just the feeling of loss. When Photographer Mary Helen Nunn is captured a moment with Cathy Dennis, Dennis took a moment to recall the last time she had her picture taken professionally.

“Oh. Never? Gosh. I’d say when my first child was about two weeks, so that was about 40 years ago,” Dennis said.

Forty years later, Dennis and Nunn were in the middle of a 30-minute session on Tuesday. Their backdrop was the Louisville Botanical Garden.

“In 2010, I was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer, and when it returned in 2012, it was Stage 4, and since then, I’ve had it six more times,” Dennis explained.

Nyzjah Arthur (C) takes a photo with his mother and grandmother. (Spectrum News 1/Jonathon Gregg)

The tradition is held by the UofL’s Brown Cancer Center. It’s a photoshoot provided to patients and their families. This year, more than 40 families have signed up.

“Yeah. She looks great today,” Nyzjah Arthur said of his mother, Annette Howard. The event is meant to empower families during a very difficult time. “It’s good that I’m here in this moment,” Arthur said.

Every photographer is donating their talents, knowing having your picture taken in a moment like that isn’t always easy, but there’s something about a portrait that reveals a strength you didn’t know was there. 

Every family goes home with a printed and framed photo and their entire catalog from their photoshoot will be sent to them in the coming days.