May 29, 2016
BENEFITING: COLON CANCER CHALLENGE FOUNDATION
ORGANIZER: COLON CANCER CHALLENGE FOUNDATION
EVENT DATE: Nov 06, 2016
As you all know, in March 2014 Rick was diagnosed with colon cancer. After surgery to remove a huge mass and one third of his colon, he started chemotherapy because cancer cells were found in his lymph nodes. In December 2014, they checked him again, once he finished his 12 rounds. Unfortunately, the chemo didn't help. Now they were finding tumors in his liver and the periotoneal lining of his abdomen. Rick spent the entire year of 2015 in different treatments - two clinical trials, two different chemotherapies - and visiting five different hospitals, all with no luck. Despite his refusal to give up, and the constant fight, by the end of 2015, his liver and adbomen were riddled with tumors, and there were new tumors growing in his colon again.
When he passed away in February 2016, many of you were shocked to hear he had even been sick. Rick didn't want anyone to know. He wanted to be a guy with a normal life who just happened to have cancer. We traveled, went to concerts, and just loved each other as much as we did, all while his cancer was happening in the background of our everyday life. To quote him, "All I can tell you is if I had the choice of seven years of Courtney or not having cancer, no question she’s worth every second", which is exactly how I feel about him. I miss him every moment of every day. It's like a limb has been removed from my body.
I've tried to get into the NY Marathon every year since we started dating, always with no luck. It seems fitting that this is the year I get in, like he is still looking after me. Because of this, I've decided to dedicate my run and fundraise for the Colon Cancer Challenge Foundation.
The Colon Cancer Challenge Foundation has been working in New York City since 2003, raising awareness of colorectal cancer, funding screening programs for the uninsured, and providing much needed funds to young investigators who are committed to finding a cure for colorectal cancer.
More than an estimated 51,000 Americans died from colon cancer this past year. By joining Team Colon Cancer Challenge I'm joining the fight against colorectal cancer and helping spread the word that colorectal cancer is preventable, treatable and beatable with early screening.
The Colon Cancer Challenge Foundation launched Team Colon Cancer Challenge in 2010 to:
- Encourage colorectal cancer survivors to incorporate exercise into their everyday lives as a way to significantly reduce the rate of recurrence,
- Provide a grassroots opportunity for colorectal cancer survivors and their family members to raise awareness and funds for colorectal cancer in their community,
- Offer those who have lost a loved one to colorectal cancer a positive and effective channel for their rallying cry against colorectal cancer.
Team Colon Cancer Challenge has raised more than $445,000 in support of efforts to raise awareness of colorectal cancer and the importance of early screening, prevention, and research.
Friends, pay close attention to something they say above - colon cancer can be preventable!! With proper screening, you might prevent it from happening. I wish Rick had gotten a colonoscopy years ago; he might not have gotten sick. Unfortunately I'll never know if that might have been the case, but you all can take steps to keep yourselves healthy. He said it before, and I'll keep repeating his words - get your yearly colonoscopies. They may just save you life.
To Rick, my love, you will forever be my always.