Don Murphy was first diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2014, only ten months after he retired. He was 55 and had spent his life traveling while working for US Airways. Soon after his diagnosis, he joined a support group to help him navigate the journey ahead.
Following surgery to treat his disease, Don has now been cancer free for two years. He credits a large part of the navigation of his prostate cancer journey with one nurse at Norton Cancer Center, where he was treated, who introduced him to the support group and resources he needed after being diagnosed.
The support group I joined really helped me understand prostate cancer. It’s ‘the good, the bad, and the ugly’ meeting – you learn good, bad, and ugly things that other men are going through, but we are all supportive of one another.
Two weeks before his surgery, Don found out that he had a family history of the disease: his father had been diagnosed eight years before. His brother and two of his nephews had also been battling the disease, as well as his uncle and cousin on his mother’s side. He never knew anything about it.
Finding out his family’s medical history and that so many had battled the same disease he was now facing illustrated for Don that prostate cancer is often not discussed and treated as a taboo topic.
It’s important to talk about prostate cancer.
Don and his team, Team Murph, participate in ZERO’s Greensboro Run/Walk to spread awareness about prostate cancer. He’s grateful for the Run/Walk giving him the opportunity to share his story with other men in his community to hopefully decrease the “taboo” nature of the disease among men. He strives to tell his story so that other men understand the need for awareness, particularly the increased risks with family history and ethnicity.
A friend introduced me to ZERO, and when I visited the website I was glad to see so many resources. The website was very helpful; it’s like a support group – it gave me an avenue to express myself.