The Delray Forum's On the Spot: Myra Reilly 

Myra Reilly
Nursing Director at Pinecrest Rehabilitation Hospital,
Breast Cancer Survivor

What was your experience with breast cancer?

I'm fine. I had it while I was living in New York. Amazingly, it didn't have a negative but a positive impact on my life (thanks to) early detection and listening to my doctor about surgery. It was definitely a positive thing in my life and probably the reason I'm a nurse today. After recovery, my husband asked me what I wanted to do with the time I had left. And I always wanted to be a nurse, but I got married and ended up working for a school district.

When did you become involved with Pinecrest Rehabilitation Hospital?

I moved down here in 1999. I had finished nursing school in New York and came to Pinecrest, a freestanding, 90-bed, acute in-patient facility and a unit of Delray Medical Center. I was a charge nurse, nursing supervisor, then director of admissins and then nursing director.

Did you take any precautions or make any changes after your diagnosis?

No caffeine. It's a life-altering experience; you never really have an idea of what life has in store for you. In terms of family, you never know what can be taken away. I didn't become a nurse until I was 47 years old. I wanted to give a message to my children that if you have a dream, live that dream. I had a dream, and I lived out my dream.

Does your family participate in fundraising and awareness events during Breast Cancer Awareness Month?

I have two daughters in New York and one son in Florida, eight grandchildren and my husband. My family is educated and knowledgeable on breast cancer, my daughters do a yearly three-day walk in my honor.

Article featured in Delray Forum Vol. 54, No. 43.