Photo Credit: KSDK

Story originally published on 5 On Your Side.

Michele Rouse is the definition of a fighter. After already beating breast cancer once, she was diagnosed with the disease for a second time less than five years later. During her first rounds of treatment at the Cancer Care Center at St. Anthony's Medical Center in North Carolina, Michele was fascinated with a quilt with breast cancer ribbons in the waiting area. After her return to the treatment center, she was disappointed when a nurse told her that the quilt had been stolen.

Michele knew she wanted to make something to replace the quilt that had given her so much inspiration during her first diagnosis, and the idea of creating her own quilt out of her late mother's supplies and materials was something she couldn't shake. Michele spent the following months hand-stitching a new quilt, which she then donated to the Cancer Care Center upon completion.

"It represents somebody watching over us from above," Michele said to 5 On Your Side. "To me it's my mother. To other people it can be whoever they feel a connection to. I just wanted to do something that she would be proud of me for."