'A Christmas Carroll'

WAVE 3 TV News’ Gee to serve as
grand marshal at Carrollton Parade

Recent brain tumor surgery
hasn’t slowed her down

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

CARROLLTON, Ky. (December 2009) – A familiar face will lead off a community parade for the city of Carrollton this year. Known for her professionalism and honest character, WAVE 3 TV news personality Dawne Gee has been chosen as grand marshal for the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce-sponsored parade. It is scheduled to step off at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 5.

Dawne Gee

Dawne Gee

For the past six years, Gee has been battling a brain tumor. Although the tumor was malignant, she recently made the decision to have surgery to have it removed.
Gee received the news from her doctor late one afternoon, just minutes before she was to go on air with the 5 p.m. newscast. Over the phone, her doctor told her she had a brain tumor. In a state of disbelief, she somehow she held it together to get through the newscast.
The location of the tumor (a pituitary adenoma), made removing it very risky. It was deeply rooted in her brain. It wasn’t life-threatening, but it threw her hormones into a tailspin and caused painful headaches.
That was six years ago. Since the surgery, she no longer has to take a barrage of medications and deal with life-disrupting side effects. Gee said she had “lots of reasons” for choosing surgery versus taking medications the rest of her life to deal with the tumor.
She advises others in this situation to “make their own choice.” It was a difficult choice, but one she does not regret. Gee had family rooting for her, sons Eric and Alexander, and daughter, Brittney.
“We chose Dawne Gee because of her active community involvement and her great personality,” said Bret Calhoun, administrative assistant for the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce. The parade is part of the city’s annual “A Christmas Carroll” celebration.
A Louisville native, Gee is well-known for her active community work. She is on the board of the Brain Injury Association of Kentucky and the American Red Cross board. She donates her time to many organizations such as the American Cancer Society, Spina Bifida Association, the MS Society, the Lupus Foundation, Community Health Charities, American Lung Association, St. Baldricks and Guardia Care Advisory Council.
“As Muhammad Ali says, ‘You pay your rent in this world by giving back to others,’ ” said Gee. While she said that may not be Ali’s exact words, it’s close enough to the way she feels about giving back to the community that has so richly blessed her.
Gee was asked by Cindy Dunn, parade chairperson, to participate in the event.
“If anyone watches Dawne Gee on WAVE 3, her personality and compassion just jumps out at you. I believe those qualities will bring excitement to the parade,” said Dunn.
Although the chamber has held parades in the past, this is the first time the chamber has sponsored the parade, said Dunn. “We wanted to make it a fun and exciting day for the young and old alike.”
Participants do not have to be a member of the chamber to enter a float. The only requirement is that each entry has to have a Christmas theme or decoration that displays the spirit of Christmas, said Calhoun. The parade route will begin behind the Century 21-State Farm Insurance offices on Highland Avenue on Marwill Drive and end in downtown Carrollton.
Three prizes will be awarded to the best entries: First place receives up to $300 in free newspaper and radio advertising, provided by WKID, WIKI and The News Democrat; second place receives up to $150 in free newspaper and radio advertising; third place receives a 4x8-foot banner from Bottom Line Marketing.
Churches will be judged in a separate category with the first place winner receiving $100 cash, plus a trophy. Schools are also encouraged to enter and will also be judged in their own category, with winner receiving $100 and a trophy.
“A Christmas Carroll” will include a craft tent, music, visits with Santa, a Sugar Plum Cooking Contest, carriage rides and much more. There is “something for the entire family,” Calhoun said.

• For more information, contact the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce at (502) 732-7034 or Cindy Dunn at (502) 732-6669.

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