Richland woman diagnosed with rare cancer

RICHLAND, Wash. -- A local Richland woman is in the fight of her life. She was diagnosed with cancer last year, but her case is more unique.

It's rare you ever see Crystal Schott without a smile, which is why it was so difficult for her friends when they heard the news.

"We all just assumed that she was going to do the lumpectomy and that was going to be it," said coworker Melissa Hernandez.

But that wasn't it. Crystal was diagnosed with metaplastic carcinoma, a rare and aggressive type of cancer that is found in less than 1 percent of all women with breast cancer.

"There's lots of things I wanted to do, and I've put a lot of them off because I'd get to them eventually. And sometimes it's really scary, because now I realize that, if I keep putting some stuff off, maybe I don't get to have an eventually," said Crystal Schott.

In the last four months, Crystal has been out of work, dealing with chemo, infections, and blood clots, taking a toll on her mentally and financially. With her sick time running out, Crystal is looking at bills up to $20,000.

"I definitely felt very hopeless, and sometimes I still do, but I think I am a lot better now, and very scared," said Schott.

But Crystal isn't alone. Facebook friends are reaching out to help her cause, getting attention from more than a dozen local businesses with over $4,000 donated.

"It made me feel really good that there's a lot of really good people who care. They've never met me, they don't know me, and yet they are still helping," said Schott.

"This is a tough thing, and it makes me happy because that takes something off of her that she doesn't have to worry about," said Hernandez.

Crystal also worries about those that are helping her, urging people to not wait on life.

"If there is something you've wanted to do, you should go do it. Don't put things off because eventually might not show up. You should do those things now," said Schott.

Crystal says she has finished her chemo treatment and goes in for radiation next week. Doctors say that, after five years, they give a 50-50 chance of survival. Donations can be made at any HAPO under her name, Crystal Schott.