3. Edie Falco
In 2003, the award-winning actress Edie Falco was 40 years old and filming the HBO show The Sopranos, when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. A year earlier, she had felt a lump in one breast, but the doctors told her it was nothing. When it happened again, she underwent a biopsy and the diagnosis was confirmed. Edie said at the time that she felt fear and shock, but also confusion and extreme anger. After being diagnosed, she decided to only tell her closest family and friends.
Undergoing treatment with chemotherapy and radiation therapy, she wore a wig and continued to work. "It was perfect for me," said Falco. "The more I was able to just show up for my job, the more healthy I stayed. It was important for me to go through it privately. I am grateful for the opportunity to learn that about myself. It takes a brave person to fight for their own life." At some point, her struggle became public and the actress began to inspire others.