Neville underwent 3 brain cancer surgeries in the early 1990s and in 1998 was told to get her affairs in order. That's when the nurse and author started running marathons.
In May she set out from California, finishing in Florida in August. Her association with St. Francis stems from her mother, a 1947 graduate who remained a faithful contributor until her death.
"It shows that even though you might have a disability or disease that you can still fight through anything," said Tiffany Belton, a St. Francis student.
"It's an inspiration to have her here and to set myself to be like her," said Charles McDowell, also a student.
Life has thrown Neville another curve; while she was on her cross country trek she got word that tests uncovered tumors on her thyroid which could be cancerous.
"In spite of her own physical setbacks that she still keeps going that she has set goals for herself and we try to tell the children we want them to set goals," said Sister Constance.
Helene Neville still has a fight ahead of her but it confident she'll win. She says with the prayers and support from St. Francis de Sales she can't lose.