American country music artist Craig Campbell joined us in March 2013 for our Stars Go Blue Benefit Concert, opening for country music legend Alan Jackson. We were thrilled to have him as part of this inspirational event, and touched at how candidly he talked about losing his father to colon cancer when he was just 11, emphasizing the importance of screening and family history.
I don’t remember exactly how old I was when my father was diagnosed with colon cancer – I was very young and only ever remember him being sick, especially those last couple of years. I remember him having to go to the hospital a lot. It wasn’t until after he passed away that they told me it was colon cancer that actually took him. I was 11 years old when he passed away and he was just 36.
While he was sick, my dad was always kind of secretive about it. I don’t think he wanted me to know. I was young, and I knew he had a colostomy bag and I knew that wasn’t normal, but he didn’t tell me any more than I needed to know. I guess he was trying to protect me.
What He Learned
I want to get ahead of the game, which is why I started getting colonoscopies. I got my first when I was 26 years old. So far, both my colonoscopies have been clean.
Seeing what my dad went through has put me on a path to try and be proactive about my health, including getting screened for everything from colon cancer to any kind of cancer. And I actually have an appointment coming up to talk to my doctor about Lynch syndrome.
My goal is to stay healthy to make sure I’m around for my kids when they get older.
His Personal Mission
The first thing I tell people is that as bad as colon cancer is, it’s very preventable. And if you catch it in time, you can have it taken out and be done. The survival rate is very high, when it comes to that. So my main goal is to bring awareness to being screened and getting checked out.
Craig & the Colon Cancer Alliance
I heard about the Stars Go Blue Benefit Concert and heard about Alan Jackson getting involved with the show and the cause. We always love and enjoy doing shows with Alan, but this cause is something I’m very passionate about. My team reached out to the CCA and they were more than happy to have me at the show. Once I was signed up, I started doing my research about the CCA and the Blue Note Fund and realized the cause was even better than I’d realized.