LENEXA, Kan. (WDAF) – This Halloween will be sweeter than last for one Lenexa woman who can now say she’s a breast cancer survivor.
FOX4 first talked with Susan Leichter last Halloween. She had just started what would be four months of chemotherapy but was determined to decorate her yard for the holiday.
Leichter has loved Halloween since she was a kid and decorates her house for the children in her neighborhood.
“It’s just something I’ve always enjoyed,” she said. “I like scary things. I like the pretend, and it’s just fun.”
This year is no different, except the 50-year-old is now in remission.
“It’s nice to be done with the treatment, have some energy back,” she said.
Leichter’s “Halloween House,” near Apache Road and 79th Terrace, features hundreds of decorations, including a skeleton-drawn hearse, Bubba the dog and the creepy babysitter under the porch in the back yard. It’s an interactive and sometimes spooky experience for people in the neighborhood.
“Some people decorate for Christmas. I decorate for Halloween,” Leichter said.
Leichter said planning for Halloween took her mind off her battle with cancer. Doctors found no evidence of the disease in April.
“It gave me a pleasure whenever I was sitting around the house, not able to get up, to do anything because the chemotherapy had me completely worn down,” she said “I would look forward to it”
Leichter said her husband and neighbors were also helpful during her journey.
“They volunteered to help setup, to help tear down,” she said. “This neighborhood is the best neighborhood I could ever ask for.”
“We know how much it means to her and so it almost means more to the neighborhood, knowing that us being a part of it and enjoying it is so important to her,” said Katie Bean, who lives across the street.
A welcomed distraction, during a time of uncertainty.
“Look for something that you love,” Leichter suggested to people fighting cancer. “Look for something that you enjoy and put that passion into it.”
Leichter is scheduled to have reconstructive surgery Thursday.
As for the display, it’s on and disinfected nightly.