Preston Manning, founder of two federal Conservative Parties and one-time leader of the opposition in Parliament, is a prostate cancer survivor. He retired from politics in January 2002 to undergo treatment.
Photographer Alana's father, James Lake, on a family vacation in Italy. James was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2006, at age 56. Thanks to an early diagnosis and a successful prostatectomy, James is now well. Alana says, "Fortunately, my dad is a survivor and can continue to do the things he loves, like travel with us."
One diagnosis, one supportive family, one victory, and a thousand steps toward the fight against cancer. After beating prostate cancer in 2001, Allan Rock decided to demonstrate his determination to win the fight against cancer by promoting prostate cancer awareness as honourary chair of the Alterna Do It For Dad! Family Run and Walk, each Father's day, one of the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation's most successful fundraising events.
Russ Germain, retired CBC announcer. His father died in 1984 of prostate cancer and Russ stopped smoking after that. Twenty-two years later, however, he was diagnosed with late-stage lung cancer. He said, “I am alive because of new drugs, excellent medical care, and the love of my wife, family, and friends. Each day is a gift.” Sadly, Russ passed away in February 2009.
Although Brian had been watching his PSA for years and showed no symptoms, he was shocked when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2006. After seeking a second opinion, which he found utterly essential, he picked a treatment option that suited him best. Brian’s suggestion is this: learn all you can about the disease in order to make informed treatment decisions.
Elaine Speck Bassett holds a portrait of her father Harold Speck, who suffered from two separate cancers. He survived prostate cancer in 1998 after radiation treatment but when he was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in 2004, he decided not to receive treatment. "He died with dignity and grace," says Elaine.
Jacques Bussière, 69, the photographer's father and hero; a survivor of prostate cancer and 40 bouts of radiation. Taken from a poem Jacques wrote: “I'm a soldier in an invisible war, saluting general exhaustion, wounds from collateral damage, and courage on all fours, crawling in the trenches. Will the cancer surrender?”
Daniel Sikorskyi was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2004. After a third biopsy revealed that the cancer was spreading, he underwent an operation to remove it. Since the surgery, he has been cancer-free; however, the experience has left its mark.
Dr. Martin Gleave, professor, Department of Urologic Sciences at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. A prostate cancer researcher and surgeon, he operated on photographer Daniel when he was battling prostate cancer. Daniel says, "Dr. Gleave was a very positive influence in helping me with my decisions and finally going through with my surgery."
Shannon Griffin has been in nursing for 26 years, holding a B.Sc. and masters degree in nursing. She currently works at Vancouver Coastal Health as a Men's Health Associate with the Men's Health Initiative of BC (MHIBC). She is one of the health professionals who helped photographer Daniel when he was battling prostate cancer.
Roderick's original diagnosis, of prostate cancer, was in 2002 - he was 72 years old. After ten years of remission, the cancer returned with a tumor in his bladder. Roderick was a jack of all trades and worked his fifth generation family farm with his wife Marilyn and their 5 children until the mid 1980's. He then went to work at the local woolen mill, and retired in 1990. A hard worker and a family man with 5 children, 13 grand children, and 1 great grand child, he was a loving husband, a kind soul. Roderick passed away in January 2010, aged 85.
The photographer's brother Bob and sister-in-law Pat. Bob survived prostate cancer and Pat survived breast cancer. Dodie says, "They are living testimony to courage, determination, and the progress made in the treatment of the disease."
Ron Anger, husband of photographer Ellen, is a survivor of prostate cancer. The couple still has to take a deep breath before every yearly checkup, but so far he has always been given the all-clear. Ellen says, “Things aren't perfect, but he is still breathing and life is good.”
Andrew Dickison (left) and his grandfather, George Henry Talbot Acott. George was 88 when he died of prostate cancer, having fought the disease for 18 years. In his last year, George took morphine for the pain and would often wake up at night, hallucinating that the house was on fire. Andrew's favourite memory of his grandfather is when he taught Andrew how to milk a cow.
What has carried George Main through the trials and tribulations of prostate and bladder cancer are his wife, support group and karate. After struggling with incontinence for years, George finally found a solution that was effective, allowing him to perform all of his favourite sports with the same level of energy as he did before his prostate operation. George feels that Go Ju has provided the self-defense needed to combat any doubts or demons that may arise. “I have found that the techniques of breathing, meditating and mental focus are vital to battling the days of self pity and providing an inner peace,” says George.
Only four days prior to a trip to Scotland with his wife, Grant was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He decided to block it out of his mind for the time being and try to enjoy the holiday. Upon returning to his home in Grand Bend, Ontario he visited with many doctors and people who had already been through the process of dealing with prostate cancer in order to determine his own course of treatment. Grant is now approaching the fifth anniversary of being cancer free since his surgery.
Frank Sojonky and his wife, Carla Cumming Sojonky, founders of the “Bird Dogs” fundraising group, which raised $2.5 million to help launch the first prostate cancer research chair in Alberta. Frank has been fighting prostate cancer for 19 years and says, “No one can do everything, but everyone can do something - and do it now!”
Photographer Isabel's mother, Jennifer, who lost her father to prostate cancer when she was 14 years old. On the right she holds a photo of herself taken two years before his death. On the left she holds an image of her father taken around the same time by legendary Canadian portrait photographer Yousuf Karsh.
In 1994, Jake Braun was first diagnosed with an enlarged prostate gland. "We waited. I say we, my wife and I, because when you've been married for 48 years it's we and not I," said Jake. Putting love and dedication as their number one priority, Jake and his wife found strength, emphasizing, "Hugs do wonderful things." After 16 years of life with cancer, Jake passed away in March 2011.
From the time John discovered he had prostate cancer his state of mind went from disbelief, shock, and anger and then to fear that he was going to die. “I was what I thought was in the prime of my life, our children were getting married and moving out, my first grandchild was coming…it wasn’t fair,” says John. Other than the usual complications his healing after surgery went well. John now considers himself one of the lucky ones, and wants to give back where he can.
In July 2008, Antonio Azevedo walked 170 km from Toronto to Niagara Falls to raise funds for, and awareness of, prostate cancer. Antonio’s father, Francisco, had died of the disease and the walk was in his memory. Antonio finished the gruelling trek in five days, raising over $45,000.
Eugene had always been told that boys don't cry. During hormone treatment for prostate cancer, he cried with his wife, whose father had died of a brain tumour, and his sister-in-law after her successful breast cancer treatment. “I learned that it was okay to cry,” says Eugene, now cancer-free for several years.
Carl Jablonsky was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1991. He received 30 radiation treatments, underwent surgery and took part in an experimental program that cost $100 per pill. Although at one point the cancer spread to his bladder, Carl is cancer-free today.
Jimmy James Polson, an 86-year-old Algonquin of Long Point First Nation, in the Temiscamingue region of Quebec, and a survivor of prostate cancer. He still enjoys the presence of Mother Earth.
James Brittain, a prostate cancer survivor, was one of several men who took their pants off to raise awareness and advertise the Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation's Rally of Hope. The 2008 rally supported a project to treat prostate cancer. The poster read: "I'm taking off my pants to get you talking."
Allen Switzer was diagnosed with prostate cancer in August 2007. Initially he felt immobilized, but with the support of his faith community and Hopespring Cancer Support Centre, he felt uplifted. He learned not to allow the cancer to define who he was.
Micaelyn Mann in her mother's laboratory, representing future cancer researchers. She says, "My grandfather is alive today because of medical research: he has survived three types of cancer including prostate. He is very happy now, and thankful he is cured. I believe that through research, we will find a cure for cancer."
James Simes was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1995 and his wife, Sonia, with lung cancer six years later, which returned three years after initial treatment. Both are doing well after radiation and chemotherapy for Sonia and a prostatectomy for James. In 2008, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. They continue to go on adventurous trips every winter, and love discovering new places. Jim says, "we will keep going until we run out of money or health."
Paul faced the possibility of cancer gradually. In three years his PSA passed 6 and a biopsy showed one needle as positive. He treatment of choice: accelerated radiation. His attack of choice: continual high-energy gym visits, daily meditation and loving friends and family.
NDP leader Jack Layton with his wife Olivia Chow, a cancer survivor. In late 2009, Jack was diagnosed with prostate cancer, which his father, Robert, also battled, in 1993. At the time of his diagnosis, Jack said, “Olivia won her battle and I’m going to win mine as well.” Jack became Leader of the Official Opposition in May 2011, but unfortunately, had to step down when diagnosed with a different cancer in July 2011. Sadly, Jack lost this battle on August 22, 2011.
Walter Hagar, 73, from Ottawa, Ontario, has been fighting cancer for 10 years. What started out as prostate cancer has moved into his bones. "I feel wretched today,” he said on the day of the photo shoot. “Just wretched."
Ron was in shock after his diagnosis in March of 2004. After a successful operation the following summer, his PSA is now undetectable. During his recovery, Ron says that his wife Carol was an amazing caregiver along with the support from his daughter and son Kristine and Jim. Now Ron volunteers at a hospital where he talks to newly diagnosed men and recent surgery patients. "Life is good! Sharing my journey with others has been very rewarding."
After surviving an invasive cervical cancer in 1989, Lorraine is now helping her husband, Jude, deal with prostate cancer.
When diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2002, Charlie felt anger, then denial, before pulling together with his family to fight the disease. Then he was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2005—but Charlie remains optimistic. He is involved in the Prostate Cancer Support Group in Labrador City, Newfoundland and Labrador, and gives presentations on cancer awareness.
The photographer’s father, Alex, had prostate cancer at the age of 67. He is now 74 years old and living a full life: hiking, canoeing, skiing, and travelling around the world.
Photographer Tessa Peerless' grandparents, Lenny and Eileen Harrison. Lenny was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2002. Throughout his surgery and treatment, he always kept a smile on his face. Tessa says, "He has a great sense of humour, and his motto has been, 'Be kind to others, be happy, and enjoy life.'" Lenny is now cancer-free.
Winston had just turned 61 when he was diagnosed with Prostate Cancer in 2002. Fourtunately he was a true believer in regular PSA tests, having realized their importance for men past a certain age. After a small spike in one test he sought out a second opinion despite the fact that his urologist told him there was nothing to worry about. Thanks to his perseverance, Winston was diagnosed at an early enough stage for the cancer to be treated, and since then has been healthy, as proven by regular check-ups. He recognizes that his perseverance was crucial in ensuring that his cancer was discovered in time. “I took control of my situation," says Winston. “You have to be your own advocate."
Lloyd Mitchell was in shock as he was surrounded by family, dignitaries and media and given Vernon B.C.’s 2010 Good Citizen of the Year award. Since his battle with prostate cancer began in 2000, Lloyd has dedicated most of his time to volunteering. Some of these services include founding the Vernon Learn and Disability Group, co-chairing the Vernon Prostate Cancer Support Group, organizing the Do It For Dad prostate cancer awareness run, serving on the John Howard Society board and volunteering with Big Brothers and My School. He is thankful for his life in Vernon and says that serving others has been a big part of that.
Eric Hayes took this self-portrait only minutes before undergoing radial prostatectomy at a hospital in Halifax. He documented the entire two-day process with his very own camera. For Eric, this was a way to face his fears about the surgery. He says, "It was a keen moment of truth, of awareness, of trust and destiny, not unlike a paratrooper just before a parachute jump. Who knew what might happen next. My fate was in the hands of the urologist and his team. My job at this point was to relax and let go."
Sean Dennis and his mother celebrated her 93rd birthday in France, 50 years after her own radical masectomy. After his father died of prostate cancer in 1971, Sean was very aware of his vulnerability. Although Sean thought it best not to tell his mother about his diagnosis, he had an inkling that when she passed away in 2009, she knew. Frequent phone conversations and visits led him to believe that her ‘mother’s instinct’ was working. Since her passing and his treatment, Sean has been healthy and cancer free.
John was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1999 and had surgery in 2000. His father died of prostate cancer so he was well aware of the importance of regular check-ups and PSA tests. Since the surgery, John's PSA has been non-existent and he joyfully manages to keep up with his energetic grandchildren.
Dan Hennessey, author of Snap of a Glove decided to share his own personal story of survival with the world to increase awareness of the disease. His belief and approach to tackling Prostate Cancer is simple – early detection! “It only takes a few seconds, but it can save your life,” says Dan.
After 26 years with the CBC and since being treated with brachytherapy 14 years ago, Bob now enjoys his new career as a prostate cancer ‘thriver.’ He enthusiastically works with volunteer support groups and individuals across Canada as Managing Director of the Prostate Cancer Canada Network. Bob believes that the Prostate Cancer support groups fulfill an important role. “I firmly believe that maintaining a positive attitude and helping others along their journey goes a long way to a successful recovery.”
Bob’s journey involved seeking peer help, which was so helpful, that after treatment he founded a support group within his own community. In that time they have helped over 150 newly diagnosed men get over their fears by providing practical information and enabling them to make intelligent choices. His support group sees the advent of a national network as a very positive force that is needed to bring focus to the cause. Bob is very excited about the future of men’s health issues.
At the young age of 43, Bill was told that he had prostate cancer. On the way home from the doctors’ office, Bill says everything was a blur: “I remember thinking to myself how I would die and what would happen to my family.” The time leading up to the surgery was difficult for Bill, as he could barely eat or sleep. However, after meeting with a prostate survivors group, he was reassured. “After talking to some of the people at the meeting I thought to myself that maybe I do have a chance after all,” Bill says. He is now helping men and their families with prostate cancer at the Newfoundland and Labrador Support Group.
Derek was diagnosed with a very aggressive prostate cancer in 1995. After hormone therapy, the cancer metastasized to his spine and he underwent surgery to remove the two bad segments and replace them with donated bone. The operation took over twelve hours, and Derek was walking in three days. Miraculously, he now suffers from no back pain at all. Derek says that his wife, a healthy diet, and positive attitude helped him through it.
Sarah and her father Tom enjoy a sunny day with some ice cream in Vancouver's famous Stanley Park, where a man with a parrot lets the two pose for a picture with his bird. Tom was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1984 and opted out of cancer treatment, "wanting quality of life over quantity," says Sarah. He passed away in February of 1987 when the cancer metastasized - he was only in his 66th year.
Driving home from work in Alberta, photographer Randy Pond received a call from his father telling him through a strained voice that he had just been diagnosed with prostate cancer. “I was scared and a deep sense of sadness washed over me. When I hung up the phone, I cried and the tears flowed,” says Randy. Now, Randy smiles as he shows off his moustache in this self-portrait. In 2010 he joined thousands of men across the country in an effort to raise awareness for prostate cancer during the month of Movember. Randy hopes to use his photography to help spread awareness of the disease.
Randy Pond poses with his father Mel, who is a Prostate Cancer survivor.
Tony dresses up as Santa Claus for the Christmas Season. In 2010 he was diagnosed with stage two prostate cancer and opted for surgery, as “everyone has to choose the option that is best for them,” says Tony. He is happy to confess that with advanced surgical methods, it is now possible to have a full recovery and return to normal life.
Mourning the loss of her grandfather, Kelly holds a photo of the two of them close to her heart.
"...There's a strength about a man who has eyes full of warmth,
loyalty, knowledge, experience, true patriotism
He wasn't ready to leave us until
he had his wife and youngest daughter at his bedside.
He wasn't ready to go until
his daughter assured him that it was alright
to now go be with his oldest daughter
and only then did his face fill with happiness and relief
with a single tear.
He was never afraid for himself,
he was afraid for our pain...
there's an amazing strength about a man like that."
Kelly holds up a photo of her grandfather who passed away from prostate cancer in 2002. Shortly before he left, Kelly’s grandfather told her “You will be the first to know when I die, that is how connected we are.” She wears angel wings to show that she lives partly here with us, and partly there with him.
Jerry, a retired structural engineer, is a father of 3 and grandfather of 7. After undergoing radical prostatectomy surgery, he considers himself fortunate in needing no further treatment to date. Jerry now volunteers with prostatectomy patients and counsels newly diagnosed patients explaining that, “there is life to be lived after a prostate cancer diagnosis.”
Brampton resident and prostate cancer survivor Ian Smith is seen standing by the Irish Sea in front of ‘South Head Cliff,’ his first ascent on the Coast-to-Coast Walk. In 2002, Ian walked 300 kilometers across Northern England, from the Irish to the North Sea over a span of 14 days to raise funds for prostate cancer – an idea that had been almost two and a half years in the making. He gathered over $2,000 from his trip by canvassing neighbours, friends and relatives for donations. He dedicates the walk to the many men who, for whatever reason, were unable to take advantage of the PSA blood test as part of their regular physical exams.
Wayne was diagnosed with prostate cancer at the early age of 39. Although there was a strong family history – both his father and grandfather had prostate cancer – Wayne was still baffled that he could contract it in his 30’s. Today, he advises anyone within earshot to get a PSA Test annually. “I don’t want my younger brother, son, nephew, or any other man to have to go through this. It’s time for a cure and I’m helping in any way that I can,” says Wayne.
Wayne was diagnosed with prostate cancer at the early age of 39. Although there was a strong family history - both his father and grandfather had prostate cancer - Wayne was still baffled that he could contract it in his 30's. Today, he still advises anyone within earshot to get a PSA Test annually. “I don't want my younger brother, son, nephew, or any other man to have to go through this. It's time for a cure and I'm helping in any way that I can,” says Wayne.
Ron Telpner of “Ron's Rants” shows his quirky side and positive approach to fighting prostate cancer. Although his doctor suggested traditional forms of cancer treatment, Ron decided to try to fight it by eating healthy, meditating, doing yoga, taking supplements and exercising. His saying: “Cancer is so out of style."
V. Tony Hauser
Simon, prostate cancer survivor, and wife Cheryl Samuel enjoying a bubble bath at the Le Meridien King Edward Hotel in Toronto as they celebrate Simon’s birthday.
Aaron Bacher, a prostate cancer survivor and member of Prostate Cancer Canada Network - Toronto now volunteers his time and knowledge to prostate cancer patients who have recently been diagnosed. Aaron himself was diagnosed with prostate cancer on Tuesday May 25, 1999, on the same day he found out that he would also need to have quadruple bypass surgery. Now, Aaron is the immediate past chairman of the support group and still spends a couple of days each week volunteering at hospitals to help prostate cancer patients and their families.
Gord Stone first participated in the 2010 Ride To Conquer Cancer after just a year and a half of cycling experience. It was only after signing up, however, that Gord was told he had Melanoma. In November 2010, Gord was diagnosed with prostate cancer and in March he underwent robotic laproscopic surgery. This year, he is unable to ride but is still fundraising for prostate cancer and will be on his motorcycle helping others get through the ride. “I am committed more than ever to this cause because of my own personal experience,” says Gord.
In 1993, Doug found himself constantly getting up at night. Two years of testing later, tumours were found in his prostate. After rounds of interviews with many health care professionals, Doug says he finally decided to “rid myself of The Beast.” He is now proud chair of the prostate support group in Nanaimo, B.C.
Jim Dorsey and his wife Sandi wave from their car which they will drive to California for Cruisin’ for a Cure, a one-day car show supporting prostate cancer. Jim and his wife hope to expand the car show to every major city in North America, and that it will eventually provide free prostate cancer screening to all men 40 and over. They are also working with minority groups in Canada to increase awareness of the disease. Jim says, “there is life after prostate cancer!”
Following a career as a survey engineer Dick Groot returned to photography, his high school passion, where he currently experiments with alternate ways to present photography to the public. In 2001, at the age of 62, Dick was diagnosed with prostate cancer. The decisions that followed were difficult and emotional, but thanks to his wife and children, he had help along a rather uncertain path. His motto: “Live well every day, and never mind the small stuff.”
John J. Guiney Yallop (left) identifies as a parent, a partner and a poet who believes in community and in paying attention to emotions. John was diagnosed with prostate cancer in the winter of 2009, shortly after his fiftieth birthday. Support came from many people--his daugher, Brittany (middle), and his partner, Gary (right), and from other family members, as well as from friends and colleagues, near and far. To explore his emotions while dealing with the disease, John wrote a chapbook of twenty-five poems which he titled Notes To My Prostate.
At the early age of 43, Brett Wilson got a chilling call from his urologist telling him that he had an advanced case of prostate cancer. “So much for this being an old man’s disease,” Brett says. A Canadian entrepreneur and philanthropist, leading deal-maker on CBC’s award winning Dragons’ Den and soon-to-be host of Risky Business, Brett has not let cancer bring him down. Only a year after hormone therapy and radiation, he climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, the tallest mountain in Africa.
After an initial period of numbness, Bill O’Brien took his prostate cancer diagnosis as an opportunity to show friends and family that living with cancer is an adaptive process, not a fearful one. Having now lived with metastasized tumours for nearly ten years, Bill says his will and strength have been tested. “I still believe that the glass is half full, and I live a very rewarding life in the bounties of the Canadian Maritimes," he says.
From the age of 16, Dean Hatt has been riding motorbikes. Upon his retirement, Dean finally got his dream bike, a 1985 Honda Gold Wing. Only a year after his diagnosis and subsequent surgery, Dean was back on his bike, greatly relieved that he was able to pursue his passion again. Dean's motto: “Do the things you are passionate about for as long as possible even if it takes a bit of extra effort.”
This is a photo of George Gorlick which was taken by his daughter, Jackie. George passed away in 2007 at the age of 78 as a result of prostate cancer that he had been battling for the previous decade. His diagnosis did not ever slow him down. His passions were golfing, curling and downhill skiing which he continued to pursue until he was confined to a wheelchair as a result of the cancer metastasizing. His daughter says he proved wrong the old saying "only the good die young".
A poster-boy for mid-life health and fitness, Alex Baumann was shocked to be diagnosed with prostate cancer at age 47. This two-time gold medalist at the 1984 summer Olympics can’t remember having any symptoms, and credits the PSA test for early detection. After undergoing robotic surgery, Baumann still swims four times a week and lives a hectic life criss-crossing Canada to meet with summer and winter sport federations.
Gary Lajeunesse, a prostate cancer survivor, with his best friend, Lady. A few years after undergoing a prostatectomy, his PSA levels were elevated once again and he went through 28 sessions of radiation. Now cancer-free, Gary enjoys Lady’s company on daily walks.
Carl “Clint” Helgason, who bears a striking resemblance to actor Clint Eastwood, poses with his kids and grandkids at Winnipeg's Assiniboine Park prior to the Father’s Day Walk/Run for Prostate Cancer. Carl is now a prostate cancer survivor.
Nick Dahm looks at his supportive daughter Lisa and wife Dorothy. Nick was diagnosed with inoperable prostate cancer four years ago. After 42 radiation sessions he is still able to participate in the Father’s Day Walk/Run for Prostate Cancer in London, Ontario. “That day is important to me. It is a way of giving back,” says Nick.
Jim Gardiner gets kisses from his daughters Molly (left) and Audrey (right). The two girls have been raising awareness of prostate cancer on behalf of their grandfather Dave, who has been a survivor for 10 years now.
Doreen Smith looks over a couple of the hundreds of tomato plants she and friend Lindy Woods grow from seeds to give away. Lindy’s husband battled prostrate cancer. The two ladies have been growing the cancer-fighting tomatoes for over a decade.
Michael Yuhasz Jr. (left) with his father Mike Yuhasz Sr. (right), resting in his wheelchair. Michael battled prostate cancer while his father recently suffered a stroke.
Judy Schreder (right) and Marilyn Brown (left) at the Father’s Day Walk/Run in Regina, Saskatchewan. Judy lost her father to prostate cancer and now her partner faces the disease. Marilyn’s brother-in-law is putting up a brave fight against prostate cancer. Both women admit they can’t change the past, but they can walk together for the future, hoping to make a difference for their sons and grandsons.
Gordon Kerfoot was diagnosed in December 2008. After conversations with prostate cancer survivors, reading, and research, and with the love and support of his wife, Gordon elected laparoscopic radical prostatectomy as his treatment. Still cancer-free, he monitors his PSA levels every three months while continuing an active life that includes performing in musical groups, cycling, curling, and motorcycle riding—and he has joined the executive of the local Regina support group.
Steve, grandfather to Raquel, Brian, Fashia, and Bridget, was diagnosed in 2009. The 60 years that Steve spent struggling to keep the family farm alive prepared him for his fight with the disease. While the children would love to say that they carried him through his year-long battle, they admit that Grandpa was the one who held everyone together. “We hope that research can make it possible for grandpas everywhere to spend more time fishing—which is where he is today.”
At 73, Peter MacDonald flexes his muscles for prostate cancer awareness. Now an eight-year survivor, Peter was taken aback when the disease struck. He was active, fit, ate well, and did all the right things to stay healthy. Being an optimistic person, he approached his fight against prostate cancer with a positive attitude. Peter remembers repeating to himself: “I can handle this. I can beat this.”
Marques Reeves, prostate cancer survivor and a Search and Rescue Technician of the Royal Canadian Air Force. Marques has parachuted into the North Atlantic 450 miles from shore, been hoisted down at night to save a stranded climber, and has provided pre-hospital care to survivors of Land Sea and Air incidents. Marques now self-catheters four times daily and treatment is ongoing as he fights for his own health.
Bill Dilny shares a private moment with his daughter just before her wedding. For years, Reagan repeatedly insisted that her father go for a medical checkup. After finally giving in to the pressure, Bill was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer and operated on a month later. “Were it not for my daughter’s insistence,” he says, “who knows …” Today, Bill has no residual problems.
Ruby Grace Agoncillo
Ramon and his grandson Jeremy gaze at the lake as they prepare for their morning swim. Ramon came to Canada from the Philippines in 1989 on a mission to provide more opportunities for his family. After a recent diagnosis, Ramon is more determined than ever to fight for his health and once again, for his family.
Janine kisses her dad, Andy, who has been a survivor for almost 10 years now. She is happy to still have her father in her life and thankful that he can be an adoring grandfather to her two young kids. Andy is as healthy as ever and enjoys playing golf with his daughter, something that they both love to do together.
Emilio Ciampini, seen here, knows the loss that prostate cancer can yield. Twenty years ago, he lost his father to the disease. Emilio’s son, photographer Giordano Ciampini, was deeply affected as he sat beside his dying grandfather. Answers about family history were forever lost. “No man need be an island, and that’s why through loss, love, knowledge, and advocacy we’re all tied together,” Giordano says.
Mike Williams, 52, has played hockey since he was six years old and has spent the last 13 years coaching. Diagnosed in March 2011, Mike says the team has been like a family to him. Here he wears a cape signed by all of the kids, parents and friends who support his fight against prostate cancer. Mike was honoured as 2011 Coach of the Year.
Morgan Smith pictured in Edmonton, Alberta, with a photo of his father, James Keith Smith, who died of prostate cancer in 2002 at the age of 67. Nine years after his death, Morgan still feels the pain of his father’s absence in his family’s life. Morgan is only 49, but he has regular prostate checks and plans to encourage his two sons, now 29 and 30, to do the same.
Karen Cyrenne Giroux lost her dad shortly before Father’s Day in June 2008. He lived with prostate cancer for more than 18 years. Karen is thankful for his early diagnosis—that he was able to retire and travel, and delight in time spent with his young grandsons while he was still well. She smiles when it’s mentioned that she is exactly like her dad, since this means that his spirit continues on.
Erin Stewart and her dog run in the Father's Day Walk/Run for Prostate Cancer in Brampton on Sunday, June 19, 2011. Stewarts father, Terry, was diagnosed with prostate cancer in November of 2009 and underwent surgery in March, 2010. Stewart recalls the fear and shock of finding out your parent has cancer. She credits her father's positivity in his battle and thanks him for always teaching her, "think positive and positive things will happen." Today Terry is cancer free and was able to watch his daughter finish the race.
George Miles, diagnosed in 1999, underwent a prostatectomy the following year. After a relatively normal recovery, he became involved with the local Kamloops, B.C. prostate cancer support group. George loves sports, and still participates in his favorites - skiing, golf, biking, and hiking. "Things are going well to date," he says.
Jill Duce (Edmonton) and Gordon Ross(Calgary), sister and brother-in-law, are ready to run in memory of Jill's grandfathers who died of prostate cancer. It is also for Jill's father who has been in remission from prostate cancer for 8 years now. Jill says, "his grandchildren are lucky, because they get to know their grandpa whom they love very much."
Irene Garner, seen with her 20 year old grandson Mackenzie Bennett, at the Calgary Father's Day run in Calgary for Prostate Cancer. Irene's husband Alan died of prostate cancer, among other cancers, in 2004. Together, Irene and her grandson Mac honour Alan by participating in fundraisers for prostate cancer. “Every time I ask someone for money, it is with my husband in mind,” says Irene.
Yalmer De Orbe and son Yalmer De Orbe Jr stand together after participating in the Calgary Father's Day run for Prostate Cancer. Each year, Yalmer and his 14-year-old son strive to improve their time. They do this to honour Gabriel De Orbe, father and grandfather who died of prostate cancer in 2010, in Mexico. Running with so many people at the event gives this father-son duo energy, and helps them to deal with their loss.
A young girl runs alone in Calgary, AB, at the Father's Day Run for prostate cancer awareness.
"Dougie's Gang" drives 350 km, from Campbell River to Victoria, to participate in the Run for Prostate Cancer. This is their ninth run, and this year alone, the family raised $8,000. Dougie's Gang runs in memory of Douglas Warner Drake Sr., who passed away from prostate cancer in 2001. Douglas’s widow (upper right) says, “Douglas was a very special loving person. The children were his pride and joy.” Judging by how many family members run in his memory every year, he must have been quite special indeed.
"The Wise Quacks," Dr. Dave Hepburn and Dr. Rob Sealey, seen on local Victoria B.C. television and heard on their syndicated radio show, demonstrate just how much fun a prostate exam can be.
Colin McRae (left) and Jan Dumontet (right) of the Prostate Paddlers Dragon Boat Team were thrilled to meet Dr. Riley Senft at Assiniboine Park in Winnipeg. Riley’s “Step into Action” run across Canada to raise awareness and funds for prostate cancer really impressed their team. "We would be honoured to have him paddle with us," says Colin.