BETHANY – The late Beth Mayer Hersh, a 1979 graduate of Bethany College and sister of the Theta Chapter of the Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority, lost her battle with breast cancer in 2008. Yet the disease has not extinguished the influence that ‘she got on with this sorority chapter and Bethany as a whole.
As October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Hersh’s memory was honored Friday as part of Bethany’s homecoming, and the Theta Chapter sisters were honored for their breast cancer awareness work. . A pair of sisters from the Theta chapter got scholarships on behalf of Hersh because the whole chapter received a Ford Warrior quilt from the Neighborhood Ford Store.
This was the first time that a Warrior Quilt had been offered to an entity that is not a breast cancer treatment center, yet Zeta Tau Alpha is a champion of disease awareness.
The sorority is the official fan outreach partner of the National Football League and its alumni and college members have worked with all 32 teams to spread the breast cancer awareness message.
Chapter Theta is doing its job with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
It’s a fitting way to commemorate Hersh, said Nancy Lewis, public relations manager for Neighborhood Ford Store. Lewis is a Bethany graduate and friend of Hersh, and on Friday he described how powerful Hersh’s mind was.
“Beth was one of the most committed and enthusiastic women to ever honor this small college of distinction,” Lewis said. “To those who knew her, Beth was a loving and powerful force of nature. For the sisters who have followed her, Beth remains a source of inspiration.
Two sisters from the Theta Chapter – Kasie Goldsborough, second-year education student and Olivia Masciantoni, first-year psychology student – received the Beth Mayer Hersh Award this year, an annual internal scholarship given to the women who best pursue engagement. de Hersh to philanthropy and the community.
Winners were chosen through themed essay submissions, “Why is breast cancer awareness important? “
The two students not only helped raise awareness of the disease and the search for a cure, but they also, in their lives, helped comfort those who have battled breast cancer. Goldsborough said an Alpha Xi Delta sister’s aunt in Bethany was undergoing treatment for breast cancer, and the Theta Chapter prepared a basket for her and hand delivered it. They did the same for Goldsborough’s aunt when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
The wife of the Masciantoni High School football coach was diagnosed with breast cancer, and Masciantoni quickly set up a “Pink Out” match in her honor and raised thousands of dollars for her.
“Having a personal touch is extremely important” Masciantoni said. “It makes the whole fight so much more personal.”
And that makes getting a named scholarship for someone like Hersh all the more meaningful, Goldsborough said.
“Our elders are very important to us”, Goldsborough said. “They’ve done so much for us, so it makes you feel closer to the elders and Beth when you see these things.”