Community rallies behind cancer-stricken El Dorado Hills store clerk, mom of four
EL DORADO HILLS, CA - What do a beauty queen, a grocery store clerk and a belly dancer have in common? Genes and a desire to beat back one’s advanced stage of cancer.
Gina Finelli Bass thought the pain in her side would heal on its own. After months of discomfort, the Raley’s grocery store clerk finally visited a doctor.
“(My doctor) said she wanted an X-ray and I finally went to the new imaging place in El Dorado Hills near my house,” she said. “Later I got a call from my doctor. It turns out they wanted to get me to an emergency room right away. My whole left side was filled with fluid.”
She was admitted to the hospital and at first, the doctors were perplexed.
“The hospital (doctors) thought it was an autoimmune thing because at 48, they thought I was too young to have cancer,” she said. “They tested the fluid and found cancer cells. That’s when they said it was stage four.”
Apparently, it had been building for a while, but she had grown accustomed to the discomfort.
“I had four liters of fluid around my lungs,” she said. “It was impairing my breathing but I had been living with it for so long, I didn’t really notice.”
Gina, a mother to four children, was told she has six months to a year to live.
Sisters Lizette Finelli, a belly dancer at Folsom’s Planet Earth Rising with Moon Goddess Caravan, and Holly Finelli Bialorucki, who is the 2013 Mrs. El Dorado County, urged her to get a second opinion.
“She’s had an MRI and her brain is fine,” Lizette said. “There are spots on her lungs and adrenal gland.”
According to the sisters, ...