Rockmans store manager Julie Dawson (left) has survived melanoma twice so she enlisted Clare Jeffries to shave her head to help find a cure for others.
Rockmans store manager Julie Dawson (left) has survived melanoma twice so she enlisted Clare Jeffries to shave her head to help find a cure for others. Elyse Wurm

'I feel like this is my purpose'

JULIE Dawson has sat in the doctor's chair twice and heard the devastating news cancer had invaded her body.

Just last year it threatened to take away her ear.

Both times Ms Dawson has fought the melanoma and survived, which has inspired her to help find a cure for others.

Ms Dawson, who is the store manager at Rockmans, remembers the terror of being told 20 years ago a melanoma had been discovered in her leg.

She went under the knife to remove the potentially deadly growth, needing a skin graft to patch up the scar.

Just last year history repeated itself when she found out she had another melanoma on her ear.

"I kept thinking 'Why me?', but it wasn't as scary as the first time,” she said.

"You have to stay positive or it beats you.”

Rockmans store manager Julie Dawson (front) has survived melanoma twice and last week shaved to help find a cure for others. Pictured here with Clare Jeffries who did the chop.
Rockmans store manager Julie Dawson (front) has survived melanoma twice and last week shaved to help find a cure for others. Pictured here with Clare Jeffries who did the chop. Elyse Wurm

It's not the only medical challenge Ms Dawson has had to face.

When she was 35 she learned she wasn't able to carry children.

Now 54, Ms Dawson said helping others battling cancer has given her life meaning.

"People ask themselves what their purpose is, I feel like this is my purpose,” she said.

"You've got to (stay positive) or it eats you alive, you've got to get up every day and thank God you're here,” she said.

Julie Dawson (left) shaved her head at Rose City Shoppingworld last week.
Julie Dawson (left) shaved her head at Rose City Shoppingworld last week. Elyse Wurm

Ms Dawson didn't lose her own hair during her battles, but decided to do the big chop last week for the Leukaemia Foundation World's Greatest Shave.

Outside the Rockmans store, she sat smiling while her hair fell to the floor.

The Warwick woman has been given a clean bill of health, but battling cancer has forever changed her outlook on life.

"It (cancer) makes you appreciate every little thing you take for granted,” she said.

To support Julie head to leukaemiafoundation.org.au.



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