North Texas Leader Is Beating Kidney Cancer

By Sara Story
|  Monday, Feb 14, 2011  |  Updated 6:30 PM CDT
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Denton City Councilwoman Charlye Heggins was diagnosed with  kidney cancer two years ago, last month doctors removed her kidney, but she's still fighting.

Sara Story, NBCDFW.com

Denton City Councilwoman Charlye Heggins was diagnosed with kidney cancer two years ago, last month doctors removed her kidney, but she's still fighting.

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A Denton city councilwoman with kidney cancer is beating the odds after 15 surgeries.

Councilwoman Charlye Heggins was diagnosed with kidney cancer in 20. Last month, doctors finally had to remove her kidney.

"I said, 'I don't want you to panic, because I'm not panicking,'" Heggins said.

When she was diagnosed, she asked her doctors for one favor.

"That is -- 'Please don't try to tell me your prognosis, because you can't do it. You don't know how long I have to live because you can't predict your own life. I thank you for what you've done, but the rest is left to God and me,'" Heggins said.

She then charged forward full-force with no time line.

"I feel like if I can do something as I go through, than my living will not be in vain, never," Heggins said.

She is currently serving her third term on the Denton City Council and represents the southeast side of the city.

"I don't want this part of the city to be known as the stepchild," she said.

Despite her enthusiasm, Heggins had to put her duties on standstill when doctors removed her kidney two weeks ago. She said the cancer has not spread, which is a miraculous sign because she has received no chemotherapy or radiation treatments.

"I said, 'You find it, you trace it, you follow it, you cut it, you get it," Heggins said.

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