At the age of 39 I was diagnosed with two separate cancers within one year, colon and esophageal. As a happily married father of three young children this is a life changing event. After my first surgery of many to come I sat on the edge of my hospital bed and promised my wife Amy, an avid marathon runner, that I would one day run a marathon beside her. With more surgery and chemo treatments I began to doubt my ability to deliver on this. Internet statistics clearly showed that my stage 4 esophageal cancer came attached with a less than 4% five-year survival rate. I was fortunate to be introduced to Dr. Gail Darling (Thoracic Surgeon) who together with Dr. Ralph Gilbert (head and neck surgery UHN) ran their own marathon with my final 8-hour surgery to remove portions of my stomach, esophagus and multiple lymph nodes in my neck. Fast forward 5 years later and here I am, training to run the Boston Marathon on April 15th, 2019 alongside my wife Amy. Without the incredible skills and expertise of Dr. Darling and her team along with the amazing innovations through their research I would not be here today. I am running to help raise money for the Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation so that Dr. Gail Darling and others in her field can continue to provide exceptional care to patients who need it.
In addition, I would like to thank Pierre Girouard from Manulife and the John Hancock Invitational Program for helping me make this a reality.