Journalist Katie Couric revealed on Wednesday that she has been battling breast cancer since June.
In an essay published on her website, Couric shared that she was diagnosed with the disease on June 21, after an overdue mammogram revealed a tumor in the 1A stage. Having shared her colonoscopy journey on the Today show back in 2000, Couric had planned to film a mammogram video, as well, in order to raise awareness about regular screenings; the discovery of a lump in her breast ultimately derailed that plan.
“My mood quickly shifted from disbelief to resignation,” Couric recalled of her initial diagnosis. “Given my family’s history of cancer, why would I be spared? My reaction went from ‘Why me?’ to ‘Why not me?’ (Couric has lost several family members to cancer, including husband Jay Monahan to colon cancer in 1998.)
Because Couric’s tumor was detected early and highly treatable, she has since undergone a lumpectomy and several rounds of radiation, the last of which took place on Tuesday. At the moment, Couric says she’s “felt fine” following her treatment.
“Why am I telling you all this? Well, since I’m the ‘Screen Queen’ of colon cancer, it seemed odd to not use this as another teachable moment that could save someone’s life,” Couric continued. “Please get your annual mammogram. I was six months late this time. I shudder to think what might have happened if I had put it off longer. But just as importantly, please find out if you need additional screening.
“I can’t tell you how many times during this experience I thanked God that it was 2022,” she added. “And how many times I silently thanked all the dedicated scientists who have been working their asses off to develop better ways to analyze and treat breast cancer. But to reap the benefits of modern medicine, we need to stay on top of our screenings, advocate for ourselves, and make sure everyone has access to the diagnostic tools that could very well save their life.”
Couric’s long journalistic career has included stints as a Today co-host, anchor and managing editor of CBS Evening News and special correspondent for ABC News.