Per a wonderful obituary in the Boston Globe by Kathleen McKenna, it started with a bang in the U.S. for Miryam Wiley, a Brazilian native who passed away last month at age 60 from ovarian cancer:
Immigrant issues were especially important to Mrs. Wiley, who first visited the United States as a high school exchange student in Indiana in 1972, and then returned in 1982 for a month-long conference for international journalists. She met Bruce Wiley the night she arrived in Denver for the conference, he said, after the airline lost her luggage, leaving her with only a bag of shoes.
“She was a little bit at wit’s end,” said Bruce, whose company sponsored the dinner she attended that evening. Despite the travel mishap, “she was still one of the most interesting, enthusiastic and outgoing people I ever met.”
They married six weeks later and eventually moved to Dallas, Danvers and then Wellesley. They visited Brazil with their daughters nearly every summer.
In that country, where she was christened Miryam Lúcia Simões Coelho, Wiley worked as both a reporter and anchor for Globo TV.
McKenna makes mention in her piece of an earlier obituary in The Wellesley Townsman, which is well-worth reading. In the same paper in 2010, there was a profile of a local resident who was dramatically inspired by Wiley’s earlier battle with breast cancer:
After reading a story in October 2005 in The Townsman about Wellesley resident Miryam Wiley’s breast cancer battle Nan [Alexander] decided that maybe she should do a breast self-exam. Although Nan had a strong family history of breast cancer on her father’s side, many doctors had told her that she had nothing to worry about because she was not high risk. Risk comes from either side of the family.
Despite her wishful thinking, Nan still had a nagging worry. She did a breast self-exam and found a lump. Although the original recommendation was to return in six months to be checked again, Nan, because of her family history, insisted that she have a biopsy. It showed that she had early stage, but aggressive lobular carcinoma, which is hard to detect on a mammogram or MRI, as it was in her case.
Wiley wrote for many years for the aforementioned Townsman as well as for MetroWest Daily News and various outlets in Brazil. RIP.