HALIFAX -- Despite her ongoing battle with breast cancer, a young mother in Moncton's spirits remain high, in part thanks to a former teacher who has stepped up in a big way to prove she is not fighting alone.

In June of 2019, Alaura Gallagher received the terrifying news that would change her life forever.

“It spread from my breast to my lymph nodes. It was in my spine, it was in my liver, and the back pain was because the cancer was actually collapsing vertebrae in my spine,” explains Gallagher.

When her former graphic design teacher Michael Roy heard the news of Gallagher’s diagnosis, he knew right away that he wanted to help.

“I kind of ran the idea of this ‘Tri for Alaura’ concept by a couple friends, and they said it sounded like a good idea,” says Roy.

Over the Thanksgiving weekend, Roy competed against himself in a half Ironman triathlon, beating his own personal record.

“It blew my mind, because it’s a triathlon. Like that’s a lot, it’s not a small feat,” laughs Gallagher.

Along with his training, Roy also created a GoFundMe page to help support Alaura and her family. So far nearly $5,000 has been donated.

“I would encourage everyone who has the opportunity to help somebody to just do what they can, and it will always make a difference,” says Roy.

“It’s awesome to know that there’s that many people in your corner, fighting for you behind the scenes,” says Gallagher. “Even if they don’t always say it, there’s always people that are thinking about you."

Gallagher is still receiving treatment for her breast cancer, but continues to keep her spirits high.

“I’ve always been a happy, positive person, and hopefully it’ll make a difference in the end,” says Gallagher. “If you’re happy and positive throughout it, then at least no one has seen you miserable for the whole time. They know you’ve kind of lived life to the fullest.”