RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - There’s an overwhelming show of support for a Richmond woman battling pancreatic cancer.
Tashima Armstrong is a cosmetology instructor at Virginia College and owns her own salon in South Richmond, but for nearly a year she’s been unable to work after learning she has pancreatic cancer.
Many of the students Armstrong has trained along the years are joining forces to help her get through this, and they’re calling on the public to help in her journey to survive.
“I’m going through my cancer and everyone has shown me so much love. I haven’t been able to take it all in,” 46-year-old Armstrong said.
Armstrong is known in Richmond for bringing her customers' hair styles to life and teaching up-and-coming stylists to do the same.
"I love teaching. I love people,” she said.
It’s been tough lately because she isn’t able to teach or show up at her salon - Tashima’s Hair Affair on the Southside.
"It’s hard because that’s all I know, is to go to work every day,” she said.
But now she can’t. Last December, Armstrong received her diagnosis. The news came a year after her mother died of the same illness. Her aunt also succumbed to the disease two years prior.
"So much negative that we know from this illness itself…Our mother raised us to be the exceptions to the rule, and I truly want her to be the exception to the rule of pancreatic cancer,” Armstrong’s sister Rhonda Hill said.
It’s why area barbers and hair stylists are joining forces in a show of support. Saturday, they will hold a a hair and fashion show fundraiser. Some of the very students Armstrong taught are coming back to showcase their skills and show they care.
"She pays for her insurance out of pocket. This has gotten real tight. Now it's gotten to a point where we need to find her a new home. The home she's in now, the owners are ready to sell,” Hill explained.
Armstrong’s son came home from college to work and take care of mom as her health presents more challenges.
"Just as of September, they found a new tumor on her liver," Hill said.
Now those who she's touched the most are letting Armstrong know she's not in this fight alone.
"I keep positive and keep faith in God that everything’s going to be OK in the end,” Armstrong said.
Saturday’s Hair and Fashion show fundraiser will be held at Huguenot High School in Richmond from 7-10 p.m.Tickets are being sold for $10 HERE. There’s also an online donation fundraiser to help in Armstrong’s journey.