2009 Honoree: Shelly Stetson

Mush For a Cure is honored to dedicate this year’s event to Shelly Stetson;  artist, dog musher, wife and mother. In early January of 2009 Shelly lost a courageous four-year battle with breast cancer at the age of 41. Shelly’s diagnosis was one of seeds that was planted in our brains that the fruit of which became Mush For a Cure.

From the Tuesday, January 14th Duluth-News Tribune: “…it was Shelly’s sense of calm and her positive energy that most people speak of when they remember her.

“She was a wonderful spirit. You always felt it when you were around her,” said polar explorer Will Steger of Ely, a good friend of the Stetsons. “There was this great grounding.”

“People are drawn to her. All kinds of people,” said good friend Ingrid Evavold of Foxboro.

John Stetson said he was drawn to Shelly because of her sense of adventure. They knew each other for 15 years and were married for 10. Their first date was peeling logs for a friend’s home in Ely. For 12 years, they spent each October and November training their sled dogs in Churchill, Manitoba. Polar bear encounters weren’t uncommon. Shelly was undaunted.

“She wielded a shotgun like a state trooper — with a baby on her back,” John Stetson said.”

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