CARROLLTON, Va. (WAVY) — A breast cancer survivor is on her way to a full recovery.
Chemerre Wells’ life changed significantly, when she found a lump in her breast. After several tests her doctors diagnosed her with breast cancer in April 2022.
Shortly after the diagnosis, she went through chemotherapy treatments in July 2022. Now she is officially cancer free.
The ongoing health battle has put a brief pause on her beloved coffee shop, ’54 Beans Expresso Bar and Cafe.’ The shop is located at 13478 Carrollton Blvd.
“54 [Beans] represents your dream, not letting go of your dream and never giving up,” said Wells. “Our vision for 54 is to encourage and inspire peace!”
Unfortunately, her business was forced to close its doors nearly three weeks ago.
Wells posted a very transparent message to her customers on Facebook saying:
“As some of you may or may not know last year was tough for me. Fighting cancer and running a business is not an easy task. I got behind on rent and today I was locked out of the shop. I’m not ashamed or embarrassed. Life happens and I tried. Hopefully we won’t be gone too long. I appreciate everyone who supported 54 Beans. See you soon! “
Her friends, Jamilia Shipman and Eyvondra DeBerry saw the post and worked together to get the Isle of Wight community involved.
“54 Beans is a treasure to us and we’re going to stand with her no matter what,” said Shipman, creator of the GoFundMe account.
Customers from all over the Hampton Roads area pitched in to raise $7,000 in one day.
“The community just jumped into action, which I was not expecting at all,” said Wells. “I don’t want to cry but I so appreciate it! I am so grateful and we are coming back!”
“She put so much heart and soul into this business that we don’t want that investment to go to waste,” said Shipman. “The fact is the community has spoken and they’ve said that 54 Beans is a valuable asset!”
The small group of women tells 10 On Your Side they will keep the GoFundMe up until the end of October, which wraps up breast cancer awareness month.
“Get your mammograms, that’s very important, as Black women sometimes self-care is on the back burner. Make sure you’re prioritizing yourself, especially this month,” said DeBerry. “Please go get your mammogram!”
Wells adds this message: “Just take care of yourself. If something is not right. Then go to the doctor and continue to advocate for yourself because everyone’s situation is different, and you just never know what is going on.”
Wells has two more surgeries she must undergo. The hope is more people will donate to help meet her goal of $18,000 in order to fully reopen.
If you would like to donate to the GoFundMe click here.
Watch the full story on WAVY-TV 10 at 6 p.m.