Thread: Something we should consider.
07-30-2011, 01:17 AM #1
Something we should consider.
Hmmm, I debated on even posting this, but after searching the site and only coming up with (1) passing result back in 2006, I figured I would bring it up as it is very relevant to our hobby and our sport.
A couple weeks ago, I witnessed the horrible death of my brother-in-law from Melanoma. Andy was 32 with a daughter of 12. Now folks, this was truly a horrible, heart wrenching death to behold. Not that any death is easy to witness, but this was bad. The tumors were evident under his skin and you could see them clearly on his back. The pain he endured was horrific, even doped upon some seriously hardcore painkillers. When he would try to sleep, he would groan and writhe in excruciating pain as these tumors invaded every tissue in his body. His urine was the same color as Coke. He would bleed if you touched him to hard. Just so many bad things were happening to him. Towards the end, I prayed to God to be merciful and to please take Andy to spare him any more pain. I like to think that he was listening and saw that Andy had endured enough and at 4pm on the 14th of July, he took Andy home.
Now Andy was a big guy(6'8") with an even bigger heart who would do anything for anyone. But as a construction worker, he liked to work outside with no shirt when he could. He did not take the steps necessary to protect his skin and admitted this freely. (2) years ago he developed a funny looking mole/birthmark looking thing on his back. He showed it to us and we told him to go get it checked out. He didn't. About six months went by and the mole thing had expanded and turned into about a 3 inch by 1 inch stripe. We pleaded withhim to go get it checked out and he relented. The diagnosis was Morphing Melanoma. He had surgery a month later to remove it and we thought he was inthe clear. He went back in 3 months later for a scan and appeared to be clean.Then he went back for his 6 month scan and the cancer was everywhere, brain,spleen, liver, bones.... He went through all of the chemo and radiation therapies (when you see the side effects, you wonder why they call it therapy) but all of this was to no avail...the damage was done. After going through all of this torture, medical science had reached it limits and on Friday 8 July,the doctors, told him that he had 4 weeks to 4 months... 6 days later he was dead.
We play in the sun all of the time. We have a lot of safety gear like helmets, vests, neck protectors, GPS's and many other things. Lets make sure that we add hats, shirts and sunblocks to our safety gear and wear them religiously. You may think you look uncool or that stuff is hot and cumbersome, trust me...there is nothing cool about Melanoma. And please make sure you guys get checked out by a dermatologist at least once year, twice would be better. My appointment is on Aug 12th.
I don’t want this to turn into a sympathy thread, Andy would hate that, but heed the message and get checked out.
Thanks for taking the time to read this. Hopefully I didn't bring you guys down too much.
07-30-2011, 07:10 AM #2
I have no doubt that this was a tough post to make, but it sure does convey an important message. Obviously, a little sunblock goes a long way. And I'm sorry to hear of your family's loss - such a young man, too...
07-30-2011, 10:08 AM #3
Rip, sorry to hear about it and it's such a shame things like this happen to good people in this cruel world ...great post that we can all learn something from , thank you for sharing
07-30-2011, 10:57 AM #4
i havent been to the dermatologist in a couple years... last time i went they scrapped a mole, turned out to be nothing cancerous... but now im scared after reading this.. Im makin my appointment post hast
07-30-2011, 06:06 PM #5
Thanks guy. I see that this thread has about 70 views and if this helps only one person get out in front of this disease....well I am sure Andy would be happy. I know as guys we sometimes like to believe that we are invinsible or that if we ignore a problem it will go away, but this is preventable if you catch it in time.
svtnos.... thank you, but don't be afraid (that was not the intent of this thread), you have the right attitude about being proactive for yourself and your family. You have expirience with being examined and that might also help folks to hear.
07-30-2011, 09:57 PM #6
In memory of Andy this post is "sticky" in hopes that it will heed the message thanks for sharing.
"The life you save"
07-30-2011, 10:06 PM #7
nice beerdart. very important to always wear sunscreen!
07-30-2011, 10:31 PM #8
Thank you all so very much. I am truly grateful.
09-22-2011, 10:15 PM #9
I used to be the same way - no protection from the sun....
I'm gonna go give the wife a huge hug n a kiss for being relentless in changing my habits.
R I P Andy
09-24-2011, 07:04 PM #10
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