When Anne Rosenthal was first diagnosed with colon cancer in June 2006, her first reaction was not game over; it was "game on!"
Prior to her diagnosis, Rosenthal was a runner in her free time and a math teacher at Shaker High School. In life, according to her friends and family, she was a leader and filled with determination and passion. Her husband, Roger, said she had had the nickname, "Sarge."
Naturally, Roger said, when Anne learned of her illness, she was determined to beat the Stage 4 cancer doctors said was taking over her colon.
"She wasn't afraid of the cancer," said Roger, who described Anne's willingness to not only stay positive in the face of her own misfortune but encouraged others suffering from cancer to stay positive as well.
According to Anne's best friend of 22 years, Lorraine Puckey, of Latham, "She had 'chemo-buddies,' and they all had Stage 4 colon cancer. She'd say, 'It can't kill all of us.'"
Puckey said that throughout Anne's time in the hospital, she would cling to her faith. Together, the friends would go to church every day and pray for Anne's recovery.
But after chemotherapy treatment, Anne's health seemed to take a turn for the worse, and she lost weight and grew weak.
Roger said his wife sought to receive treatment by clinical trials after the chemotherapy had failed to treat her cancer, but doctors said her health was already too far gone and that clinical treatment would no longer help her.
On Oct. 5, 2007, several of Anne's colleagues from Shaker High School held a healing mass in her honor at St. Pius Church, in Loudonville. Fifteen days later, on Oct. 20, 2007, Anne died in the hospice level at St. Peter's Hospital, surrounded by her family, who watched her fight the disease until her very last day.