Sharon has an iPad 2 and is getting a message that upgrading to iOS 5 will erase her iPad. She hasn't been backing up to iTunes previously, so it's good that she didn't continue with the upgrade. First when she connects to iTunes, instead of choosing upgrade, she should do a backup. This will backup everything that's on the iPad. Then in iTunes she can select which photo app to use to sync the photos to her computer. Leo likes Picasa, a free photo app from Google. This will also store the photos online.
Then she can go through the upgrade procedure and erase the iPad.