21 Mar 2013
- Written by Deidra Shores/Special to The New Tri-State Defender
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When it's your time, you will shine, and one of Action News Five's newest anchors, Pam McKelvy, is doing just that.
McKelvy is a prime example of how life can be great even after your life has been shaken. That truism hit home for McKelvy when she encountered what she describes as the hardest time in her life – the discovery that she had breast cancer.
Now, not only is McKelvy a breast cancer survivor, she's also the mother of an autistic seven-year-old son, Ian. Along the way, her faith has been a constant companion.
March is Women's History Month, a time designated to focus on women of achievement. My conversation with McKelvy left me with no doubt that she is just such a person.
McKelvy has settled in as a 4 p.m. anchor, returning to television for the first time since her son was born. It's the next leg in a 15-year broadcast career.
Before broadcasting, McKelvy was a beauty queen in the pageant world. She was Ms. Kansas of 1992 and the third runner-up for Miss America. I think it's safe to say that Pam – as I have grown to call her – is "Gone With The Wind Fabulous."
She told me that being a beauty queen and being in pageants helped her in broadcasting. It was a way for her to become a better communicator and to learn how to better relate to people. However, she said, it didn't help when it came to writing and judging stories for content. That just had to come with experience.
Pam got her first television job in Amarillo, Texas, which she remembers as a "dusty," "isolated" and "boring place to live." She had studied to become a broadcaster and that "boring place" gave her the foundation for the career she now loves.
During a routine doctor's visit, Pam learned that she had breast cancer. Once she got the news, Pam says she completely let go of the situation and gave it to God. Her thinking pattern included realizing that even though it was her life, it wasn't just her own. She needed to be there for her son and husband. Pam says surrendering to God gave her a new sense of hope, gratitude and privilege.
Eight weeks after her surgery to remove a cancerous mass, Pam was at Action New 5 as a four o'clock anchor on weekdays. She admits to being a little nervous at the beginning of her first broadcast, but by the first commercial break, it all felt natural.
Her cancer was caught early and her limp nodes were negative – all part of why she feels extremely blessed.
And now she is committed to sharing her story with others.