The Legacy of Pamela

Michelle and Pam trying on wigs

 

Pamela Ann Forsgren Kearby was born on October 14, 1951 to Gilbert Victor Forsgren and Pauline E. Thompson Forsgren in Memphis, Tennessee. Gilbert and Pauline raised Pam and her brother, Larry, in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Growing up Pam loved to visit the family lake house and fly in the family's airplane. She was always an animal lover, especially for dogs and horses. Pam owned horses and her favorite horse was named Easter. She was active in rodeo and competed in barrel racing events.


Pam graduated in 1969 from Northside High School in Fort Smith and was an active member of the Delta Beta Sigma sorority. She then attended the University of Arkansas where she majored in radio and television media. Upon graduation, Pam and her best friend, Joan, moved to Dallas, Texas. She soon met William Gary Kearby and fell in love. They were married on February 5, 1977. Gary and Pam moved to Tyler then Waco over the next few years. During that time they had two daughters, Michelle and Jaclyn. The family next settled in Mineral Wells. In Mineral Wells, Pam and a business partner opened a successful gym and dance studio. In 1990 Gary and Pam moved their family to Carrollton, Texas where they raised the girls.


In the spring of 2008, a screening mammogram spotted a dense mass in Pam's right breast. The mass was biopsied and she was diagnosed with stage III breast cancer. The diagnosis was made going into the Mother's Day weekend. Pam was unshaken and relied on her faith in Jesus, her family's support, and her inner strength to mount her battle against this disease. She underwent a mastectomy in June of 2008 followed by chemotherapy for the next 15 months.


Finally Pam was in remission and her life returned to normal. She continued close follow up screening studies until in January of 2011 a PET scan showed that the cancer had returned and she was now stage IV. In February she underwent another operation to remove the cancer from her clavicle and subclavian vein. Her chemotherapy was restarted and was continue for the next 6 months. During that time she was also diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. A follow up PET scan in August appeared cancer free. Pam continued to battle, however, the cancer returned again and in June of 2012 it was found that the disease had spread to her liver, lung, uterus, and spine.


Pam and her best friend Debbie Moran journeyed to Chicago for further evaluation and treatment by a specialty treatment center.  Upon her return Pam worsened and had to be hospitalized. She was found to have severe dehydration and a blood clot in her leg. She was also found to have brain lesion and underwent focused radiation treatments. She was readmitted to the hospital on December 10, 2012 for dehydration and liver failure. 


By the 15th of December she would only respond to her family members and she became non-responsive on the sixteenth. This was Michelle's birthday and the family rallied around Pam. The day was spent admiring and reflecting on Pam's love, spirit, courage, and determination. The Christmas story from the scriptures were read aloud by the family as the Christmas season was always Pam's favorite time of the year. With her family with her, Pam opened her eyes, smiled, and took her last breath at 11:05 that night.


Pam was always courageous and confident that she would beat breast cancer. She vowed that she would provide plush comfort care bags to others battling the disease to help ease their turmoil during their battle. We honor her compassion and generosity by taking up her cause to help others.