Jenny Murray couldn’t help herself when she saw her newest love, Bella, needing a home. In addition to caring for Bella and two senior pets, Jenny is busy organizing her annual Cancer Survivor Tea, all while coping with an MS diagnosis. The event brings together those living with cancer, for an afternoon of good company and treats.  Sheri Regnier photo

Jenny Murray couldn’t help herself when she saw her newest love, Bella, needing a home. In addition to caring for Bella and two senior pets, Jenny is busy organizing her annual Cancer Survivor Tea, all while coping with an MS diagnosis. The event brings together those living with cancer, for an afternoon of good company and treats. Sheri Regnier photo

‘Smiles and hugs’ on the menu for Cancer Survivor Tea in Trail

Jenny Murray began organizing a Cancer Survivor Tea in Trail back in 2008

Jenny Murray is one of those people who embraces life and thinks nothing of sharing their joie de vivre with others.

Mother, grandmother, foster mother, seasonal mom for hockey billets and animal advocate, she’s done it all.

But the one thing she is most passionate about, is helping those stricken with cancer. Whether it be by lending an ear, volunteering for the Canadian Cancer Society or, since 2008, by hosting a springtime Cancer Survivor Tea.

And, Jenny’s done it all while fighting her own uphill battle with MS (Multiple Sclerosis).

Last year, health issues kept her from throwing an afternoon of goodies and tea with a side of “smiles and hugs” for those living with cancer. But Jenny has been back at it for weeks now, busy planning for 30-0r-so guests expected on Saturday for what she’s dubbed a “Kick Cancer to the Curb” tea.

“Cancer is ugly, it doesn’t care who it takes,” Jenny said. “And I don’t think people realize how isolated you become.

“So I have friends, their granddaughters and my daughter who come and help me serve, it’s an afternoon of getting together and enjoying each other for awhile.”

It all started when Jenny was first diagnosed with MS a number of years ago. While struggling to recover from a flare up that limited her walking and impaired her vision, Jenny took a cab to go sit at the bedside of an acquaintance diagnosed with terminal cancer.

“We talked about so many things,” Jenny shared. “My life may be difficult at times, but I am so thankful I have MS and (not) cancer. And it was an honour to go sit with her,” she added.

“I think people don’t understand how lonely, and how alone, people can be who are sick.”

Since that time Jenny has volunteered in the Canadian Cancer Society office and been part of Relay for Life events.

“I am so fortunate to have met so many people who have had this most awful disease, ” she said. “So that’s why I put on a tea, for an afternoon we have fun and joke, get goofy gifts – it’s worth every minute of it when you hear the laughter.”

Jenny Murray is a remarkable lady, shared Willa Condy.

“Jenny covers all the cost of putting on the tea herself and put hours into working on the tea,” Condy said, mentioning local merchants donate prizes for the guests. “The goal is just to celebrate cancer survivors, there are smiles and hugs along with the tea. This is a wonderful cause.”