The Colon Cancer Alliance (CCA) encourages our members to be hopeful and as educated as possible about colon cancer. You may find practical tips and inspiration in fellow patient, survivor, and caregiver personal stories. Share your story!
We’re thrilled to have Oscar-nominated and award-winning actor Terrence Howard join us for a new and powerful public service campaign to raise awareness and encourage colon cancer screening. Terrence became an advocate after his mother passed away from colon cancer in 2008.
Eartha Kitt was an internationally renowned star and performer who distinguished herself in film, theater, cabaret, music and on television. Eartha was diagnosed at age 80 with stage III colon cancer. She passed away in 2008, but not without a fight. Passionate about carrying on her mother’s voice, Kitt Shapiro, Eartha’s daughter, has partnered with the Colon Cancer Alliance to share her mother’s story and raise awareness.
After Tess’s mom’s colon cancer diagnosis in 2011, she turned to the CCA because she wanted to help keep other families from experiencing what hers was going through. We’re honoring Tess as our May Hero of the Month because she took her own tragedy and turned it into something positive and motivating – helping save lives. And there’s nothing more heroic than that.
Laura Morefield was bright and witty. She was a loving wife, daughter and lifelong poet, but above all else, she was a warrior. Laura passed away from colon cancer in 2011, less than three years after being diagnosed, but she leaves behind a legacy of beauty, honesty and fortitude. This is Laura's story, told by her mother, Charlene Baldridge.
Kris Saim is a stage III colon cancer patient who has used his diagnosis as motivation to better his own life and increase national awareness of this disease. In recent months, Kris has become quite the activist, rallying his community to join his fight against colon cancer with creative outreach and fun activities. His efforts are driven with so much passion and commitment, Kris has landed the spot as our #1 team and individual Dress in Blue Day fundraisers! We’re inspired by Kris and thrilled to honor him as our March Hero of the Month.
Vanessa Ghigliotty was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer when she was just 27 years old. At the time of her diagnosis, she was unable to walk and her tumor was beginning to protrude out of her right abdominal wall. Eleven years later, Vanessa is dedicated to spreading colon cancer awareness locally and nationally.
Candace Henley was finally diagnosed with stage IIB colon cancer after six months of misdiagnoses. She went from what many called a “superwoman,” to needing her friends and family to take care of her. Candace went through tremendous physical and emotional turmoil, but 10 years later, has a clean bill of health.
Teri Griege was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer just two weeks after completing the Ironman Louisville Triathlon. Despite her disease, Teri continued to train during her treatment and in 2011, participated in the Ironman World Championship. She is a beacon of hope and inspiration for all patients, survivors and caregivers.
Tom Jones is a stage IV colon cancer survivor. When he was diagnosed at age 60, he was told he would not live more than two years. That was 16 years ago.
While on the way to a blind date, Chris’ stomach became extremely upset. At first, he chalked it up to food poisoning, but after seeing a doctor, he realized this was not the case. And the next 10 months proved to be quite a rollercoaster for this 48-year-old.
Janell had no symptoms of colon cancer. In fact, when she found herself in the emergency room for an unrelated reason, she was surprised when the doctor decided to screen her for colon cancer, despite her being younger than 50. And these tests wound up saving her life.
During a routine OBG-YN visit, Tonya’s doctor noticed her family history of colon cancer and, despite her being only 46 years old, suggested a colonoscopy. Although surprised, Tonya had the screening test. She shares about her testing experience and what resulted.
When Keith noticed blood in his stool at age 41, he assumed it was from a hemorrhoid or rubbing too hard. But a few months later, an FOBT and colonoscopy showed otherwise. He shares about these screening methods and the impact of a positive attitude when battling cancer.
Author/speaker Michael King was shocked and confused when he was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2008. As his life turned into a whirlwind of doctor’s visits and surgeries, Michael used the art of writing to turn tragedy into knowledge and hope.
Jose was diagnosed with colorectal cancer in 2008. He knew he had a family history of colorectal cancer, but didn’t think that was something he needed to worry about until he was older. He wants you to learn from his near fatal mistake.
Jodie discovered a cancerous tumor in her colon when she had her first colonoscopy at the age of 37. She emphasizes how young people need to know about getting screened.
Tony's stage II cancer was diagnosed only after he started experiencing symptoms. He stresses the importance of family history.
Christina was her mother's primary caregiver until her mother died of colon cancer. She offers advice to other caregivers and family members of colon cancer patients.
Disclaimer: The stories included in this section are anecdotes provided by individuals and are neither presented as a substitute for medical advice, nor are they necessarily medically accurate. The CCA does not endorse any particular opinion expressed or treatment described. The information provided should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. If you have, or suspect you may have, a health problem you should consult your physician. Please see our full disclaimer.