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Joan Lunden on public breast cancer battle: I 'just want to give voice to other people'

by A. Pawlowski /  / Updated 

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From announcing her diagnosis on television to posing bald on the cover of People magazine, Joan Lunden has become a very public and passionate spokeswoman for breast cancer awareness.

Read more: A bald and beautiful Joan Lunden appears on People cover 

"Sometimes, you just want to give voice to other people," Lunden told TODAY’s Hoda Kotb on Tuesday about her efforts. Diagnosed with an aggressive type of breast cancer in June, Lunden has undergone chemotherapy and a lumpectomy as part of what she called "a very complicated battle."

Read more: Cancer patients share bald photos in support of Joan Lunden People cover

Here’s more of what she revealed in a wide-ranging interview with Kotb:

  • On getting the news from her doctor: “I knew by her demeanor. She just wasn't even looking at me. And she sat down and she said, ‘You have breast cancer.’”
  • On making her diagnosis public: “I did not know what was going to come down the pike. I mean, I got up the nerve to go on and say the words, ‘I have breast cancer.’ And then, it started: thousands and thousands of tweets, Facebook messages, emails into my website of people saying, ‘I'm praying for you.’
  • On having a new perspective: “It's a shame you have to go through something that almost takes life away to appreciate it more. But it certainly does do it to you.”

Lunden will serve as a special correspondent for TODAY's #PinkPower series during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

We’re all about #Pink Power this week…Send us your pics on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with Pink Power

Follow A. Pawlowski on Google+ and Twitter.

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