On August 24 CancerCare Manitoba Foundation hosted the first-ever Manitoba vs. Cancer radiothon with partner 103.1 Virgin Radio.
From 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Virgin Radio hosts, including Ace Burpee and Chrissy Troy, were LIVE at CancerCare Manitoba sharing inspirational stories of patients whose lives have been positively impacted by the treatment they’ve received at CancerCare Manitoba. They also discussed the incredible work, including ground-breaking research, which happens right here in Manitoba.
An emotional and hopeful day finished with a visit from Fred Clark – an inspirational cancer survivor who will climb to Mount Everest base camp with his daughter, and a surprise visit from Rob, a listener who called in earlier to speak with Ace and Chrissy. Rob expressed his gratitude for the treatment and care his 15-month-old son received who is now six years-old.
From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU MANITOBA!
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Meet our Heroes
When Fred found out he had cancer, he could barely get through the phone call. He didn’t know he’d have to urgently undergo 35 radiation treatments and three rounds of chemotherapy in just three months. Five years later he is healthy and embarking on the trip of his lifetime to Mount Everest with his daughter.
When Maia had a fever and rash earlier this year that would not go away, her mother took her to emergency. The news – her three-year-old daughter had cancer, high-risk acute lymphoblastic leukemia. She underwent a bone marrow biopsy and started chemotherapy immediately. She had to be re-hospitalized when her white cell count was dangerously low. Her treatment will last three long years.
Eva thought her cancer journey was over. She underwent a total mastectomy to treat her breast cancer and was cancer-free for eight wonderful years. In 2011 she received a shocking diagnosis … the cancer was back and now in her liver. The prognosis – 12-18 months to live. In her words “never give up hope” and she is living proof.
In January 2016 Tenley’s parents thought their five year old daughter was battling bronchitis. Their concern turned to shock when they were told she had leukemia. Still in active treatment, Tenley has had a very difficult journey. She temporarily lost mobility in her legs and couldn’t walk. She also had extremely low blood counts which required her to be in isolation and away from her three sisters who she adores.
By the time Sean learned about his colorectal cancer, it had already spread to his liver. Just 26, he was working in the oil fields and following his passion – travelling. He responded well to chemotherapy so doctors were able to perform surgery that removed 80 per cent of his liver. Two years later, the very difficult news the cancer had spread to his lungs. The psychosocial care he’s received as part of CancerCare’s Adolescents and Young Adults Program has helped him so much.
Some patients come to CancerCare Manitoba for treatment even if they don’t have cancer. Desirae is one of those patients. Diagnosed in 2015 at age 21 with a rare blood disorder, Aplastic Anemia, in one month she went from healthy to being told she had two weeks to live. She was immediately hospitalized and then took medication twice a day for 16 months. Now done treatment, she is regaining her strength and her life back.
Chloe has lived with cancer for 11 out of the 13 years of her young life. Diagnosed with Metastatic Myo Fibroblastic Sarcoma in her right lung just before her second birthday, she has had multiple relapses, more rounds of chemo than she can count, radiation and three lung surgeries. With lung capacity of now just 10 per cent, she relies on oxygen and a wheelchair for her mobility.
It seems anyone who’s waited for the results of a cancer scan knows all about “scanxiety.” This includes the Chair of CancerCare Manitoba Foundation’s Board, Doug Harvey. In the past two years, he has had an up-close-and-personal look at the patient-side of CancerCare Manitoba. Diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2015, Doug has had surgery to remove his prostate, over 30 rounds of radiation therapy and hormone treatment. Within two weeks of Doug being told he had cancer, his older brother received the exact same diagnosis.
In May 2016 Genevieve was planning her wedding and had just started a new job when she noticed an indent in her breast. She immediately called her doctor. A mammogram followed soon after and then the news – she had breast cancer. Just 38 at the time, she underwent a mastectomy a few weeks before her wedding. She had six rounds of chemotherapy and nearly a year of targeted cancer therapy.
Brent was a young man, just 30, when he began having breathing difficulties and lost 35 pounds. A specialist found a tumour in his chest – the diagnosis, Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. He’d have to undergo nine rounds of chemotherapy and 25 courses of radiation at the same time as raising his newly growing family.