Former Radford Highlanders women’s basketball player Yvette “Pebbles” Smith looks to slam dunk breast cancer

College Sports

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — She was a star on the basketball court for Franklin County High School and Radford University in the early ’80s, setting records and getting big wins. Now Yvette Smith, affectionately known as “Pebbles”, is on the road to getting a big win over her current opponent.

The opponent smith looks to slam dunk is breast cancer. Last May, she did a self-breast exam and noticed a pair of lumps in her left breast. After going to the doctors on May 19, Smith got the word she has breast cancer as she has two masts in her left breast.

“I just started crying because it hit me as a lot of people know my mom died of colon cancer actually 20 years this year on April 4, 2001, and when she passed and my biggest thing was to make it to my 58th birthday which I did in June at 57. So I thought that was the hardest thing as that was the biggest hurdle. When I heard the news it was tough,” said Smith.

As you can imagine, she’s had her good days and bad days but overall what has gotten her through her cancer battle are a host of people, from her former teammates and coaches at Radford University to her church, friends, and her family — especially her husband David!

“David Smith is my ride. He has taken me to every appointment. He has picked me up from every appointment minus one. My daughter because he had a meeting with the CEO so I didn’t want him to miss that. But David Smith Mister Hall of Famer. He is the best husband, friend, supporter you could ever have. I love him to death,” said Smith.

During the past five months, Pebbles has had five rounds of chemo with her final round coming on Oct. 19. With the important day coming up she looking to do the same thing she did on the basketball court, that’s getting another win on the road to beating breast cancer.

“For example, we are in the 4th quarter now and I have one more chemo left. So that will put me in the last quarter of the game and I am looking to win this game. That is my goal. I will come out of this as a better person than I went into it. I am going to win this game. Cancer has picked the wrong woman,” said Smith.

Pebbles says for the past 30 years she has taken part in the relay for life. Pebbles told me today she blames herself for not getting a mammogram last year due to the pandemic as she never got around to getting it.
With this month being breast cancer awareness month, she stresses that no matter what to always get your annual mammogram. Pebbles sings the praises of the Carilion Breast Care Center for taking great care of her.

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