Former Moffat County sports star wants to kick cancer in the rear
Diana Booco won’t let it beat her without a fight.
She’s competed at the highest level of high school sports as a player before graduating from Moffat County High School in 1991.
“I got quite a few records still floating around that no one has taken off the board yet,” Booco said Thursday.
She helped lead the Bulldog basketball and volleyball teams and later passed those skills to hers and other’s kids in Moffat County as a coach for many years.
Booco’s daughter, Macey, is now on the MCHS volleyball team and she said their Bulldog pride runs deep.
“Oh yeah,” Booco said of her Bulldog blue veins. “Now I’m raising it into my kids.”
But in August, Booco learned she’d be fighting for her life after an esophageal cancer diagnosis. She started a round of chemotherapy at Memorial Regional Health this week.
“They started me off there in Junction. They’ve been really good. Then I started my first round here at the Craig hospital,” she said Thursday from her home in Craig. “…I’m doing chemo three days a week, every other week. They’re trying to lessen the blow on traveling expenses.”
The MRH regiment allows Booco to take her local treatment home with her so she can stay mobile.
“Unfortunately, being ill, life doesn’t stop,” Booco said.
Booco’s treatment has been hard on her physically.
“My immunity system being low, I’m pretty susceptible to catching anything,” Booco said. “It takes a toll and wears you down.”
That treatment has left Booco unable to attend her job in environmental service at Sandrock Ridge Care & Rehabilitation. But she hopes to return as soon as she’s able.
“That’s up to my body and the doctors giving the go ahead,” Booco said. “My motto is never say die. I’ve been knocked down quite a bit and I still get up and get back on. We’ve had our share of ups and downs with my husband’s health, so it’s been a battle.”
Diana’s husband, Larry Booco, said his wife is as strong-willed as ever.
“She’s pretty strong about it,” Larry said. “I think she’ll make it through ok.”
Booco had this advice for those with fresh cancer diagnoses.
“I’m finding out there are quite a few support groups out there with all different kinds of cancers,” she said. “…you’re not alone. Keep a positive outlook.”
To all her friends and family over the years, Booco said she’s still the same Moffat County track and field star. Friends and family have already donated to her online at https://www.facebook.com/donate/3320370441321318/10220281471536482.
“I’m able to still do stuff and have a positive outlook,” Booco said. “I was a role model back in school and in sports. I will try and continue that. I coached for years in high school…. I just want to continue being a role model. We all go though things in our lives and they aren’t always easy.”
Booco said she’s got kids and grandkids to help her grow old.
“I plan on being around for a long time,” Booco said. “My kids are still young. I want to see them get married and graduate from college so I can spoil my grandkids.”
Ultimately, Booco wants to kick cancer in the rear, and she’s not afraid to be graphic about it.
“I’m gonna kick cancer’s ass,” Booco said. “It ain’t gonna kick mine.”
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