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We'd like to extend a huge thank you to December's Hero of the Month Stephen Estrada whose support for the Colon Cancer Alliance knows no boundaries. Two years ago, at just 28 years old, Stephen was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer. Thanks to an immunotherapy clinical trial the Colon Cancer Alliance helped fund at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, Stephen is now doing remarkably well. Throughout his diagnosis and ongoing treatment, Stephen has proven himself to be a trifecta of a volunteer. [caption id="attachment_5651" align="alignright" width="286"] Photo courtesy of rockstar volunteer, Vanessa Ghigliotty[/caption] He serves as the administrator for three different groups in Colon Cancer Alliance’s online Facebook community COLONTOWN where he warmly welcomes new members, answers questions and manages conversations. He regularly attends conferences as a patient advocate and speaks to researchers, scientist and lawmakers on topics related to colon cancer and the role of immunotherapy. Stephen also played a critical role in the Colon Cancer Alliance’s ability to secure a $125,000 matching gift from the Salah Foundation. At the 2015 Blue Hope Bash, we shared Stephen's story as he was embarking on an immunotherapy trial. A friend of Stephen’s, who is also a member of the Salah Foundation Board of Directors, was so inspired by Stephen’s story and his fight for his life, he encouraged the Colon Cancer Alliance to apply for a highly-competitive challenge grant from the Salah Foundation. Through a formal grant application process, the Salah Foundation ultimately awarded a $125,000 matching grant to the Colon Cancer Alliance in support of research. The Salah Foundation was impressed with the Colon Cancer Alliance’s commitment to funding meaningful and potentially groundbreaking research. This generous gift motivated our community of supporters to give big for research, resulting in an additional $250,000 in total funding to help end this disease. Thank you to the Salah Foundation and everyone who donated in the name of colon cancer research in 2016 and thank you to Stephen for opening the door to this unique and impactful funding opportunity. Don’t forget, the Colon Cancer Alliance serves as a source of information about colon health. If you have additional questions about colon cancer screening or are in need of support, please contact our free Helpline at (877) 422-2030. We’re here to help.


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