Adoptee searches for birth family during breast cancer battle

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KENSINGTON -- Raised in a biracial family, Larissa Podermanski always knew she was adopted. At 19, she acted on a longstanding curiosity and embarked on an effort to find her birth parents.

She didn't discover much, except that her birth mother was dead. Fast forward a decade when Podermanski was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer at age 30. Curiosity became necessity, as doctors constantly asked about her medical history.

"I needed to know if breast cancer ran in my family," said this Kensington woman, creator of a blog called Metastatically Speaking. "I thought, 'If my mom really did die, how did she die? Why did she die so young?'"

So began a year long journey of revelation, love and support — during the toughest time of Podermanski's life.

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