The thing that Shane Winstead wanted before she died, the thing her family wanted to give her, was to watch her daughter Madison swim for the University of Kentucky.
Shane Winstead, former director of clinical pharmacy services with UK HealthCare and adjunct assistant professor at the UK College of Pharmacy, was diagnosed with cancer in January 2015 — stage IV colon cancer with liver metastases. Doctors later discovered tumors in her lungs.
Shane Winstead, 49, died Sunday.
Both mother and daughter had feared that Madison, then a senior at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, would never get to swim for UK with her proud mother in the stands.
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So Madison Winstead, one of the best high-school breast-stroke swimmers in the nation, took the matter into her own hands during recruitment. Her wish was granted: The NCAA cleared her to swim in the Wildcats’ intrasquad meet on April 22, 2016.
“I don’t want to shove it down people’s throats, but I just want to live by what I’ve learned and hopefully lead by example, more than anything else,” Madison Winstead said in April.
Shane Winstead was well enough to see Madison swim at the Olympic trials in Omaha this summer. But UK’s first swim team scrimmage is Sept. 30, so Shane will miss seeing her daughter’s college swimming career — except for that one shining exceptional day in April.
The UK intrasquad meet in which Madison participated while still technically a high school swimmer “is absolutely everything,” said Keith Winstead, Shane Winstead’s husband.
The Winsteads also have a son, Clayton, 22, who studied acting at Northern Kentucky University and is an acting apprentice at Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati.
“They’re both very successful in their fields,” said their father, Keith Winstead.
The family adopted the mantra “Sun Shall Shine” during Shane Winstead’s cancer battle, and now may extend the theme into an effort to honor her memory.
“We’ve known her diagnosis for some time, and we’ve been able to formulate a legacy for her,” Keith Winstead said. “It’s more just being in the moment and appreciating what you have today, and not worrying about the past or for the future.”
Funeral services for Shane Winstead will be at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Mary Queen of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church, 2501 Clays Mill Rd. Burial will follow at Blue Grass Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be 4-7 p.m. Thursday at Kerr Brothers Funeral Home.
Her father said that Madison wants to give back one more thing to her mother: She’s planning to go into pharmacy — just like her mom.