By Kari Beal Charlotte
PUBLISHED 10:00 AM ET Aug. 09, 2021
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The pandemic forced some court proceedings to go completely online during the height of the pandemic. It was a blessing for one attorney in Charlotte.
What You Need To Know
In October 2020 Charlotte lawyer Lori Keeton was diagnosed with endometrial cancer
At the same time she was working on one of the biggest cases of her career
Virtual court allowed her to continue working on the case through her treatment
Lori Keeton has been practicing law for more than a decade. Last fall, she was preparing for one of the biggest cases of her career.
“I was preparing for an oral argument before the fourth circuit,” Keeton said. “In a lawyer’s career you don’t often get an opportunity to argue before the fourth circuit because it’s the court directly below the supreme court.”
One day she started to feel off. She scheduled an appointment with her doctor, who told her they were doing some routine check-ups and would get back to her in a week. The day before her first oral argument in the case she got the news.
“I kept saying back to her I have cancer, I have cancer?,” Keeton said. “Here I am thinking I am healthy and I feel good. It was shocking to say the least.”
She had grade three endometrial cancer and needed surgery immediately. For the next two months she continued treatment with radiation. But, it didn’t stop her passion.
“I had never had an oral argument virtually before, in fact it’s pretty rare,” Keeton said.
The pandemic pushed the entire appeals court case online. It allowed her to complete the case from the comfort of her home office. It was a game-changer.
“We have all seen the memes, you could be in your nice top and your pajama bottoms,” Keeton said. “When you are going through healing from a surgery like I did, you need those pajama bottoms for a while.”
Keeton says she’s not sure she would have been able to continue work if it were in the courtroom. As it turns out she not only beat her cancer, but she also won the case.
“It allowed me to know this is just a piece of me,” Keeton said. “This cancer is a temporary part of my life, but I have all these other parts of my life that are continuing and are wonderful. So I need to deal with this piece, get it resolved and then I can resume my life.”
Endometrial cancer develops in the lining of the womb. Symptoms include vaginal bleeding and pelvic pain. Treatment for the cancer usually depends on what stage it is in. For more information click here.