BETHEL — Those battling breast cancer were recognized with an impressive display of a massive pink ribbon at last week’s New England Patriots game in Foxboro, Massachusetts, but that wasn’t the only tribute.

Twelve cancer survivors from Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine were treated to pampering on Oct. 13, including massages, manicures and relaxation yoga.

Their day of pampering included meeting Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft, quarterback Tom Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski, as well as breakfast and lunch, courtesy of the Patriots.

The 12 were then given tickets to Sunday’s game.

Shelley Douglass of Bethel, who attended the game, said the show of respect and admiration for those battling breast cancer was made “even more impressive by the gorgeous blue sky and sunshine.”

Together, fans who attended the game created an ocean of pink throughout the stands, centered with a large pink ribbon to spread breast cancer awareness.

“Before the game they had many survivors, dressed in matching pink shirts, form a big ribbon on the field. Then they all turned toward the tunnel where the team comes out and cheered as the team, led by Tom Brady, ran onto the field,” said Douglass. “When we arrived at our seats, there was a folded pink paper that had instructions on one side. It was announced what they were for and when it was happening. At the end of the first quarter we were told to hold them up. It was an amazing sight. I was impressed with how many people in the stadium did it,” said Douglass.
Along with the sense of pride, admiration and respect for those battling cancer and those who have won, there was also a somber note to the celebration.
“It wasn’t all about the survivors, it was (also about) remembering those we have lost to that horrific disease,” said Douglass.

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