Lisa Amanda Payton leaves behind her husband, Chris, and her two young children after losing her battle with breast cancer on Aug. 26, 2019. (GoFundMe)

Fundraiser started for family of Okanagan woman who lost cancer battle

Lisa Payton of Armstrong was diagnosed with Stage 4 breast cancer in 2016

Lisa Amanda Payton passed away after a long-fought battle against breast cancer last week, leaving behind her husband, Chris, and two young children.

“She was one of the strongest people you could ever know,” Lisa’s mother, Cindy Rachwalski, said. “She inspired a lot of people.”

A GoFundMe campaign has been started by Chris’ brother to raise funds in lieu of flowers that will help support Payton’s young family “until they can get back on their feet.”

In just over a weeks time, more than $1,500 has been raised for the family.

Condolences have been pouring in across social media underscoring the mark this woman made in her community.

Payton was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2014. She underwent many surgeries and treatments and was deemed cancer free. But on Sept. 16, 2016, she was diagnosed again. This time with Stage 4 cancer. The breast cancer had spread to her brain, lungs and bones.

Payton’s two children were only two and four when she was first diagnosed.

“It started out as breast cancer,” Payton’s mother said. “Then it spread in her shoulder, in her lungs and in the last couple of months, it spread to her kidney and liver.”

“She had another huge fight ahead of her,” Lisa’s sister, Jennifer Rachwalski, wrote on the GoFundMe campaign page.

Payton, who was born in 1979, loved bowling, attending concerts with her mother, going to football games and watching hockey. The pharmacy technician also belonged to a community book club.

“She was loved by a lot,” her mother said.

“Lisa loved her family, friends and loved to go home,” her obituary reads; “home” referring to Disneyland and her love for Mickey Mouse and his pals.

“She absolutely loved Disney,” her mother said. “Anytime things got bad and she wasn’t feeling well, she said she wanted to go home and they’d go to Disneyland.”

A service is to be held on Sept. 7, and those in attendance are asked to wear something bright and colourful or Disney themed in honour of Payton’s love for the magical kingdom.

“Lisa had a lot of friends and she inspired a lot of people because she was strong,” Rachwalski said. “She fought every day to have memories and spend more time with her kids.”

“She was a special person.”

For those interested in making a donation to the Payton family, donations can be made on GoFundMe.com at Chris Payton’s Children’s Fund.

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