Teressa Nabors said it was a promotion at a local health club that likely saved her life.

That, and the persistence of three close friends.

Nabors and her friends, Donna Barnes, Peggy Gruell and Sissy Knipstein, signed up to join Curves, a weight loss center for women, in October 2009 and were told that if they showed proof that they had a recent mammogram, the $25 sign-up fee would be waived.

Her friends all had receipts, but Nabors did not.

"I was just going to write a check, but they wouldn't let me and insisted that I get the mammogram," Nabors said.

She wasn't excited about going to the doctor because she said "they always find something wrong," but she made an appointment anyway.

At 49 and with no family history of the disease or lumps detected during self-examinations, Nabors wasn't worried.

The mammogram, however, showed an abnormality in her left breast and additional tests were ordered, including a biopsy.

"That's when I lost it," she said. "I lost my husband to (lung) cancer in 2006 and all I could think of was, 'Please God, don't let my daughter go through this again.'"

But it was her daughter K'rin who would show an unwavering strength and determination that would help her mother get through the coming months.

"She was tough and said, 'We will get through this,'" Nabors said.

Nabors met with an oncologist in Fort Worth and learned the cancer was in the very early stages and appeared to be contained to the left breast.

The following February, Nabors had a double mastectomy. It was a decision she called aggressive but one she felt would best enable her to move forward with confidence.

"I didn't want to have to worry that the cancer would spread to the other breast," she said. "I wanted it gone."

For the next six weeks, Nabors recovered at her daughter and son-in-law's home. The hardest part of recovering, she said, was not being able to pick up her 11-month-old granddaughter, Breeah.

Because the cancer was found so early, Nabors did not have additional treatment.

"I am blessed that I did not need chemotherapy or radiation," she said. "I am a survivor, but I'm not like so many women who have had to fight a harder battle than me."

Today, Nabors is cancer free and back to work at the Dublin Independent School District where she is the administrative assistant to the superintendent.

When asked to offer a word of advice to other women facing breast cancer, Nabors said never to give up.

"Keep the faith," she said. "Never let anyone take your hope away and always know God loves you and will get you through it."

She also remains grateful to the strange circumstances that led to her diagnosis.

"It was my friends and $25 that saved my life," she said.