Talk about bravery! When Barbie Ritzco was 21, not only she was on the verge of being deployed to Afghanistan where she'd be stationed as a sergeant for the U.S. Marines Corps, she was diagnosed with Stage IIIB breast cancer.
The soldier underwent a double mastectomy, but rather than opt for reconstructive surgery, she adorned her chest with a bright and beautiful tattoo of an open heart bursting with flowers.
Unable to return to her post, Ritzco has chosen a new, equally as courageous path: sharing her story.
The survivor teamed up with The Scar Project, as well as co-founded the Flat & Fabulous Facebook page with Sara Bartosiewicz-Hamilton, to show other women they are beautiful without pursuing reconstruction.