This journey began with a phone call. It is news that no one should ever have to deal with, but it is also something that drove a group of young men to spread the word of breast cancer awareness throughout their Long Beach, California community.

Julian Courtney, the We Love You Mommy Foundation founder, became all too familiar with dealing with this disease when he received a call from his mother, Thelma Wallace. Through the call, he could hear the pain and desperation in his mother's voice.

Thelma was diagnosed with Stage 4 breast cancer in October 2010 and succumbed to the disease on May 31, 2011. In the span of those seven months, Julian set out to raise money to help pay for his mother’s hospital bills and has continued his mission of helping rid the world of this disease after her passing.

Two of Julian's closest friends, Matthew Arana and William Alo, jumped on board to be a part of Julian's team without hesitation.

"Our friendship has grown tremendously," Matthew said. "When I found out about Julian's mother, the first thing that I said was, 'I have to stick by my brother’s side.'"

"They have placed their faith and futures with me," Julian said. "It is my duty to make sure I don’t fail them, our city, or my mother."

The organization's uniqueness of being run by an all-male team also helps them stand out. "I believe it makes us more genuine and that’s important when you are trying to instill hope and a shift in thinking about the disease that is viewed so dismally. I believe our youth and determination will aide us in seeing our mission all the way through," Julian said.

WLYM also recognizes that breast cancer is not solely a women's disease. According to the American Cancer Society, it is estimated that about 2,240 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed among men in the United States in 2013 and about 410 will die from it. Adding these facts, the foundation is open to help any and all individuals who have been burdened with this disease.

The foundation has slowly picked up speed by earning their share of recognition in the community. In October 2012, Long Beach Memorial Hospital recognized WLYM as the first breast cancer foundation founded in Long Beach.

"That was huge for us as a team," William said. "It made us push ourselves even more because we want our foundation to be around the community long after we are gone."

WLYM has also achieved their non-profit (c)(3) status from the IRS, which is especially significant to Julian because of how much effort he had to put toward it.

All-in-all, WLYM has grown, and keeps growing, into an organization that is determined to make a change starting with its own community.

Julian believes We Love You Mommy is what the people need.

"In these times people want hope, people want change and people want answers. WLYM is starting to achieve all three and I think the community sees that."

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