As some of you may know, and those reading this blog for the first time are finding out, I was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2011. I had surgery less than a month later to remove it. I was lucky.
That wasn't the first time cancer affected my life. Teachers, friends’ parents, friends and the list goes on of those who have passed away from cancer. My grandmother passed away from lung cancer in 2007; she fought hard. In August 2012, my grandfather passed away from advanced lung cancer, something he found out not long before his passing.
A few days before my grandfather passed away, I was in Salt Lake City for the annual Outdoor Retailer trade show. As I wandered the vast expanse of booths filled with all the new gadgetry, my mind drifted to my grandfather and his current condition.
While wandering, I was introduced by a friend to the John Wayne Cancer Foundation booth. John Wayne was a connection between my grandfather and myself. He liked cowboy movies, particularly John Wayne, and I thoroughly enjoyed watching these movies with him. While chatting at the booth, I mentioned my grandfather back home. The staff gave me a shirt to wear and a visor to give to my grandfather for when he went golfing.
I never had the chance to give him the visor. He passed away a couple of days later. Thankfully, I had the chance to see him one last time.
And now, the big news. I have decided to paddle the 20+ mile open water circumnavigation of Cape Ann known as the Blackburn Challenge. I am doing it as a fundraiser for the John Wayne Cancer Foundation. I am doing in for my grandfather, my grandmother and everyone else affected by cancer. My goal is to raise over $2200 for the cause - one hundred dollars for every mile paddled. I am doing it on a prone paddleboard. I am going to show my grit for the cause.
Please share your support for the cause, share it with friends and family.
To donate find my page here
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Or check back to the blog to see how I am doing.