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TLC airs special ‘Say Yes to the Cure: Lori’s Fight’ Oct. 26

Lori Allen goes personal with a special Friday at 10 p.m. on TLC about her battle with breast cancer

Lori Allen goes personal with a special Friday at 10 p.m. on TLC about her battle with breast cancer

Lori Allen is known as the no-nonsense style expert and mediator/moderator at Bridals by Lori in Sandy Springs. She is the star of not just one, but two, TLC reality programs; “Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta,” and “Say Yes to the Dress: Bridesmaids.”

But you’ll see a very different side of her at 10 p.m. Friday.

On April 17 at 7:05 a.m., the 52-year-old entrepreneur found out she had breast cancer.

“It was a life-changing moment,” she told me earlier this week. “I’ve spoken to other women and they all remember the exact date and time. It’s so shocking. I’ve always been so healthy. I’ve always taken care of myself. This diagnosis came out of the clear blue.”

You’ll watch her journey during TLC’s “Say Yes to the Cure: Lori’s Fight.” For the first time, you’ll meet her husband and children and see her home.

Allen said she almost skipped her annual mammogram, given how busy her life is. But fortunately, she did. “If I had waited a year, I would have been a mess,” she said. “A major mess.”

Within three days, she and the “Say Yes to the Dress” executive producer decided this might be worth filming. The hour-long special shows the emotional roller coaster she goes through. “I did this with hopes that somebody facing the same diagnosis would be less afraid,” she said, “and how important mammograms are.”

She first had a lumpectomy but that didn’t clear out all the abnormal cells. So in the end, she chose to have a double mastectomy. (She gave props to her cancer surgeon Iqbal Garcha.)

She also chose to have immediate plastic surgery immediately, crediting Dr. Diane Alexander. “I didn’t want to go around flat as a board, not that I was very big in the first place,” she said. “I wanted to feel normal.”

Allen said the recovery has been emotionally draining. But speaking to the cameras while going through the ordeal “was like therapy. Every day was tough. I never cried so much in my life.”

“All day long, I’m dressing women and wanting them to look fabulous,” she added. “I have to feel good in order to convey to them that they feel good.”

With TLC promoting the special, Allen said she’s already received thousands of emails and gifts in snail mail, including knitted sweaters, blankets and teddy bears. “I have been absolutely amazed,” she said. She was also invited this week for a breast cancer awareness party at Vice President Joe Biden’s home in D.C.

In the end, she said, “it’s a story of hope.”

On TV

“Say Yes to the Cure: Lori’s Fight,” 10 p.m., Friday, TLC

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84 comments Add your comment

Best wishes...

October 26th, 2012
7:38 am

…to Lori…

Best wishes...

October 26th, 2012
7:40 am

And, I know one cannot turn down a request from the VP, but hopefully she will wear a Romney pink ribbon…

Dave

October 26th, 2012
8:11 am

Wow. Do we really need to inject politics into EVERYTHING?!? This is a story about surviving cancer, not about who one is supporting for President. You should be ashamed of yourself, “Best Wishes”. Good luck to you Lori on the toughest journey of your life, no matter what your political affiliation.

Kay

October 26th, 2012
8:46 am

Amen Dave!, God Blessings To Lori, She is a Classy Lady

Mary Anne

October 26th, 2012
10:48 am

Lori, sending lots of prayers to you and your family at this time and a big hug to you. God Bless you.

Shannon

October 26th, 2012
11:25 am

I am hooked on her shows and love her and her whole crew! I give her my prayers and absolute best in her recovery.

Joan

October 26th, 2012
12:22 pm

Lori – love your shows and watch them all the time. Why people bring half the neighborhood with them to buy a wedding dress is beyond me.!!!!!

Best of luck to you, you are such a nice “lady” and deserve the best. You will be in my prayers

.Donna Reich

October 26th, 2012
12:37 pm

Lori.. I will miss you while you are gone but look forward to your return. This won’t be an easy battle but you are a strong person and with God in your heart and all our prayers you will come out a winner and a symbol to those facing the same fight…Baby steps and one day at a time…will be praying for you and sending hugs.

Kathe

October 26th, 2012
1:34 pm

Just remember that He never gives us more than we can handle. My prayers are with you.

Ruth Stuart

October 26th, 2012
2:08 pm

Wishing you Lori all the best with this tough journey of your life. You have touched so many lives helping them look great on their special days. Now its your turn to take care of yourself and get feeling better soon. Hugs to you, you are a brave lady. Thank God you caught it when you did.

Lori K.

October 26th, 2012
3:55 pm

Lori stay as strong as you are with that beautiful smile .You are like a butterfly who brings love and joy to everyone who know ’s you.You are in my prayers and can’t wait to see you back on my favorite show.

sandy snodgrass

October 26th, 2012
6:31 pm

Lori, I watch both of your shows and just love them even though I’m almost 55, and have never been a Bride, I still love the dresses! God bless you in your recoveryl. I have had the lumpectomy myself and it is a scary place but I and you will get through with support and love and prayer. Please take care of yourself, the show would be very boring without your southern quips lol ps as for the bridesmaids show,I have been one on about 4 or 5 occassions and I have to agree with the girls about having a budget and sticking to it not everyone has unlimited funds to purchase a dress that the bride doesn’t have to worry about paying for after all when she goes gown shopping she has a budget to stick to herself so she needs to respect the girls budgets too that’s all for now sending up prayers for you

Caterina

October 26th, 2012
6:41 pm

Lori, you’re a beautiful strong woman. Stay positive and brave. My best wishes and prayers to you and your family as you go through this tough journey in your life. Hugs from your fan in Edmonton. Alberta

Roberta

October 26th, 2012
7:02 pm

Lori, I watch your shows and was so sad to hear about your bout with cancer. Although I have been lucky not to have had this I do have a cousin and very close friends who have gone through it. My prayers are with you and your family at this trying time.

You have a great staff and I am sure they are a great comfort to you.

Marian

October 26th, 2012
10:00 pm

Oh Lori, I so know the feeling. I’m a 14 year survivor. I’m sure you will pull through with flying colors. I remember so not being to say the words “breast cancer.” Five years later I wrote about it and finally broke down. Many prayers and blessings are being sent your way. You are strong, you are sassy so get ready to kick some butt.

Celia

October 26th, 2012
10:13 pm

As a proud supporter of Relay For Life (yes, I will be walking again this year) and the daughter of two cancer striken parents (my father had breast cancer) I am aware of the fight you will have to fight. My love and best wishes are being sent your way.

Juli

October 26th, 2012
10:15 pm

My prayers are with you Lori, and your family at home and at the shop. Be strong, fight hard, never lose hope. Thank you for sharing this part of your life with your fans.

Raema Watson

October 26th, 2012
10:20 pm

Lori, I ask our Lord and Savior to place his healing hands on you. Fight the fight. My prayers to you and your family from Tulsa, OK.

Roberta

October 26th, 2012
10:22 pm

Lori,
I will be Pra

Kimberly

October 26th, 2012
10:29 pm

My prayers are with you Lori, be strong

Roberta

October 26th, 2012
10:29 pm

Lori,
you are such a beautiful and classy lady.I Love your show and everybody on it.I will have you close to my heart when I say my prayers.My cousin just found out that she has breast cancer too.she just turned 50 years old and just bought a house and she is by herself so she has alot on her plate too. They found cancer in one lymph note out of 12 so she has to go through 12 rounds of kemo.So Please take care and keep the faith,We have an Awesome God and he is there for you and your family.God Bless you!!!!! <3

Pat Tudor

October 26th, 2012
10:29 pm

Lori – You are an inspiration to all. You are very courageous to tell your story on air in hopes to save just one woman’s life. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your journey, and to your loving family. Get well soon.

Joy Pardue

October 26th, 2012
10:30 pm

hang in there Lori, I am a 23 year survivor of breast cancer. I had both mine taken off in January 1990. We love you and will pray for you, they did reconstructive surgery on me 7 years later, took skin and fat from my stomach, it was tough but like you said put your big panites on and LIVE, <3

joanie

October 26th, 2012
10:33 pm

May God b w/u & ur family in this very trying time in ur life … U will b in my prayers …from norton, OH

jo anne.mathews

October 26th, 2012
10:36 pm

I am watching the show when Lori is sharing her story. She is sharing her life. I think she is so beautiful! She is going to make it through this just fine. She is a fighter.I loved it when she said she was mad. She is tough! Sending good thoughts and prayers.You are loved!

Susan

October 26th, 2012
10:36 pm

So sorry to hear about your health crisis. The most important thing to do when faced with such a complex decision is question question question your doctors and get second and third and fourth opinions. Having a double mastectomy may be right for some, not right for others. It is a big big surgery and not one to be undertaken without fully understanding all options. The doctors at UC San Francisco are doing a lot of up to the minute research and might have different ideas about treatment, risk, etc.

Susan in OK

October 26th, 2012
10:40 pm

I’m a breast cancer survivor! I was diagnosed July 29, 2011with stage 3 ductal, estrogen driven cancer. I’m watching the show now and working with you!! God Bless :-)

Marcy

October 26th, 2012
10:42 pm

Lori, I never miss your show. Tonight I am watching your show and I can’t stop crying. I went for my yearly mammogram Wednesday and my doctor felt a lump in my right breast. I just felt my heart drop when I was told this. Yesterday I had a ultrasound and I am being sent to a surgeon on Monday for a second opinion. I have been so scared up until now. Watching this episode has opened my eyes. I (we) will fight this disease! We will make it. With our God, Faith, Family, Love, Strength and Courage we will get through this! My prayers are with you Lori. Thank you so very much for sharing this with us. From your biggest fan. May God Bless You!!

Susan in OK

October 26th, 2012
10:45 pm

By the way I’m cancer free so far with chemo and radiation!

Betty

October 26th, 2012
10:47 pm

Lori, God is with you. I am a 22 year survivor and have never regretted my decision to have a mastectomy. Be brave and put your trust in Jesus.

Bev

October 26th, 2012
10:47 pm

I am a 12 year survivor, diagnosed June 8, 2000. There really is life after breast cancer even tho each day, each year and each story brings it all ack again. You can beat this, Lori. Wishing you all the best and a full recovery!

Lisa

October 26th, 2012
10:49 pm

All my best to you, Lori. I was diagnosed with AML Leukemia at the end of June this year, and am now in remission. I know itt’s not an easy road to follow, but you’re a strong woman and you WILL beat this! Keep the positive attitude and know you have so many people supporting you and sending you prayers.

Susan in OK

October 26th, 2012
10:52 pm

Marcy and Lori just remember that breast cancer is very treatable… it’s not the best time you’ve ever had, but remember that you WILL get through one day at a time.

Mary K

October 26th, 2012
10:53 pm

You are one strong lady, Lori! I’m sure we’ll be watching you and your great show for many seasons to come. God bless you.

Karan

October 26th, 2012
10:56 pm

Lori, I just celebrated my fifth year of being cancer free and loved that you chose to share your story with us. I had cancer in both breasts and also chose a bilateral mastectomy. I have had my reconstruction and now am in charge of my life again. I have sat here and cried this whole hour with you and want you to know how much I appreciate what you have done for so many of us.
XOXO from Karan in California.

Jocelyn

October 26th, 2012
10:57 pm

Lori, you are the sunshine for everyone. I will pray for you and your family to keep your strength and faith. Keep the faith. Your show is amazing and look forward to your returning to your baby and all the people that love you. Sunshine is returning. Jocelyn

Marie George

October 26th, 2012
10:58 pm

Watching the show tonight, and I am so to touched by your strength. I feel like you are a personal friend. God bless Lori. Love you!

miss ginger

October 26th, 2012
11:04 pm

Bless your heart! You are in my prayers. I love your show, too. God Bless. Thank you for sharing and caring, your strength is so inspiring. Much love to you

Josie

October 26th, 2012
11:07 pm

Thank you for airing your show. I am a 5 year breast cancer survivor and my story mimics your story closely. I only had a left breast masectomy with the back flap reconstruction; however, I was discharged same day and had to return the next day for a checkup. I went home with a pain canister plus the drains. Luckily, my lymph nodes were negative and did not need raditation or chemo. I never said, “Why me?” But fought with all my might. My first concern were my two grown daughters.

I wish you all the best and thanks for being a wonderful role model.

Susan Mooney

October 26th, 2012
11:09 pm

Lori , my husband and I watched the show tonight about the breast cancer diagnosis. You are such an inspiration to all women.I thank God that you are ok and back with us on tv. I lost my father to cancer and I didn’t think I wold ever stop crying, tonight I cried for you for what you had to go through then I cried through the smiles and thanked God for your health. Thank you for sharing this with us. You are a very brave lady. God Bless, Susan

lucia ernenwein

October 26th, 2012
11:15 pm

Thank you for sharing your journey. You are in my heart and prayers.

Sharron

October 26th, 2012
11:17 pm

Your a strong woman, I also cried tonight as Im the same with Susan Mooney lost my father just over a year and a half ago. Love your show. Also I have a dear friend and a aunt that just had to go through this, partial removals of there breast. I wear a pink ribbon. God bless you.

Colleen Sieme

October 26th, 2012
11:18 pm

I look forward every week to watching your show, Lori. Seeing the previews of this special episode and knowing the general topic, I wanted to be sure to watch. You are one strong and beautiful lady, inside and out, and have given women courage and hope to fight this disease. Thank you for your willingness to be so open and honest about the reality of what you were dealing with every step of the way. I am one of the fortunate ones who has not had to personally deal with breast cancer, but your story has touched me and your strength is truly an inspiration for anyone. Thank you and I wish you all the best!

Rema deGruyter

October 26th, 2012
11:26 pm

You are such an amazing and classy lady. Watched your battle tonight and yes used alot of kleenex. There are SO many things I could say but just want you to know I am thinking of you all the way from NB, Canada xoxoxoxo

Mary

October 26th, 2012
11:42 pm

Lori, Thank you for being brave enough to share your most vulnerable of times with us. I thank your family, your staff, and TLC for allowing us in. I have 2 cousins that were diagnosed with breast cancer & that scared me too. I appreciate you recognized that many people were going through this ordeal with you (family, friends, co workers) and that it was tough on them also. This show was the reaffirmation that I needed to be sure to get that annual mammogram (which I hate). MARCY: I am so sorry that you have had a similar thing happen to you so recently. I hope that this show and Lori’s strength will continue to give you inspiration. If it is alright with you, I’d like to pray for you too – you will need strength & the doctors need guidance. Lori, I will literally be praying that God will continue to bless you.

Buki

October 27th, 2012
12:01 am

I pray that you are healed in Jesus name. I love you and your show! Thank you so much for sharing your story with us.

Ann Deppe

October 27th, 2012
12:08 am

I cried as watched Lori’s story. I am a 5 year breast cancer survivor. Today I had my annual checkup, and my mammogram was clean. But that wasn’t the case in September 2007. I had 2 lumpectomies and then had to have a mastectomy. Reconstruction was tried, but it failed. My faith has gotten me through my cancer journey. It doesnt bother me that I have to use a prosthetic. I am just thankful that I am alive. Prayers and hugs.

Nancy

October 27th, 2012
12:10 am

Lori, I fully related to your show. The same thing happened to me. I was diagnosed 7 years ago with BC. I too opted for bilateral mastectomy. You’re right it’s hard but you do what you have to do to get rid of it. The desire to be normal again is overwhelming. I too had a wonderful nurse /husband. My family,friends and my faith have and do sustain me. I feel it will you as well. God bless you.

Marshvixen

October 27th, 2012
12:18 am

You are an inspiration for so many. It took a great deal for you to allow it to be documented. A year ago I started working at an office that one of the main employees was out having a double mastectomy. She is a young single mother – her children are in the fourth and ninth grades. She had gone through the DNA testing because there is family history. Her percentage as to whether she would develope breast cancer was 99%. She chose to have the double mastectomy because she wants to live to see her children grow. She has been through hell and back, but I am in such awe of her and am thrilled that this wonderful, strong, independent lady is such an example to me. God bless you both and your families and keep you all protected and loved. Peace and love and constant prayers to you. Love your Bridals by Lori family too!!! Marshvixen from Ma

Kim

October 27th, 2012
12:26 am

Dearest Lori, you and your family are in my heart and prayers,wishing you all the very best (((hugs))
Kim from OR