A group of breast cancer survivors and supporters got together at the Knoxville Gun Range to take a class and qualify for their carry permit.

The event was a chance for the women to take aim at breast cancer and feel empowerment through firepower.

“Taking Aim at Breast Cancer” also served as a fundraiser for the breast cancer support group Casting for Recovery. The group’s main goal is to connect breast cancer patients and survivors and take them out on the river to fly fish.

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Lindsay Long got her start with Casting for Recovery when she first attended a weekend fishing trip in North Carolina as a breast cancer survivor. She said the support group and the carry class went hand in hand for a very important reason.

“Casting for Recovery is about empowering women, so this is just another way to empower women,” Long explained. “To take their own self-defense in their own hands and to learn that handguns don’t have to be scary. At the same time, they need to be prepared for what if the unknown happens.”

Sandra Ticer, a training manager at Knoxville Gun Range, echoes Long's thoughts on being prepared for the "what if."

“Women need to be able to protect themselves," Ticer said. "You know our state is ranked as one of the top ten states of women being killed by men, 94 percent know their attackers, so yes it’s important, but as our society grows more violent women need to be able to protect themselves.”

Casting for Recovery East Tennessee is able to do retreats for breast cancer survivors through fundraisers like Taking Aim at Breast Cancer. Their annual retreat is next spring.