Arizona’s Heart & Sol: Tucson brain tumor survivor’s comic helps others in similar situations
TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Every week, KOLD News 13 partners with Casino del Sol to highlight a person or organization going above and beyond in the community.
This week, it’s a Sierra Vista resident who’s helping others by drawing inspiration from own her medical challenges.
Alma Pipes started getting extreme headaches when she was a child. It got so bad, she had to go to the hospital.
A test revealed the worst, Pipes had a brain tumor.
“We got an MRI, and my mom was called in,” Pipes said. “I remember they had the nurse and the priest and they had to tell my mom. It turns out I had a brain tumor bigger than a plum in my brain. To this day, I still remember that screen very vividly.”
After going through her own battle, she began a drawing comic book to help other children who are fighting cancer.
“My really big purpose in life is creating this comic book that gives tools in the children’s hospital or even in real life to help you adjust to an illness or a disability,” Pipes said.
Pipes is still battling cancer to this day. She was was diagnosed with her third brain tumor two years ago and had another surgery last year.”
I’ve been doing this ever since I was like 11,” she said.
Pipes said she hopes her comic can help others going through a rough time.
“We might be in the little corner that people think is very dark, but somehow we’re very positive and we can find a little bit of life,” she said. “But sometimes it takes us a hard time to find those things. And that’s one of the reasons why I made it. It takes a bit to heal, and it takes a bit to figure out. And you don’t have to have all the answers. You just got to make sure to take care of you.”
Pipes has two episodes out and said she has no plans of slowing down or stopping.
“I’m going to take it to the kids and I’m going to see how far this goes,” she said. “If I can make my goal of one day making it a comic and a cartoon. Let’s reach for the stars. At least try to as long as I’m here.”
As an Arizona Heart & Sol, Pipes was given a $300 gift card from Casino del Sol. And she knows exactly how she is going to use it.
“What? I can get it printed? You’re literally giving my life work to people. Thank you so much,” she said.
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