As I was in full preparation mode at a work event, I heard my text alert go off as it often does right in the middle of my busiest moments, BUT this time what I read literally stopped me in my tracks…it was from John. “Just got a call from the doctor. I will be seeing an oncologist for treatment options for Stage 3 Colon Cancer.” I was numb, what did I just read? How is this possible? In the chain of subsequent text messages among our parents and my other siblings in true John form he responded, “just an unwanted speed bump which I rarely slow down for them.” As all who knew him or knew of him and followed his 3-year battle he never did slow down. With my mom and sister being breast cancer survivors, it was a given I was not missing my yearly mammogram, but never once did it cross my mind that I should have my colonoscopy early due to John’s diagnosis until he began the #CheckIt4Andretti campaign. WHY? I thought colon cancer was an old man’s disease, John was just unlucky, it is not hereditary, you have to have symptoms…I could go on and on. As his movement continued to gain momentum over the next few months, I learned more about the risks and I was at the age where it was recommended that I too go in for a colonoscopy, however my insurance company felt differently. After four long weeks of exhausting phone calls between my insurance company and my doctor’s office I threw up my white flag and gave in and paid to have mine done with the coverage I had, it was too important I have three small boys who need me and for anyone that listened to John when he spoke he always said don’t do it for you, do it for those that love you. John saved my life – at age 42 I had 5 precancerous polyps in 5 different areas of my colon and the doctor said to me, “today I get to tell you to come back in 3 years for your next colonoscopy had you waited until you were 50 if you made it to 50 this would have been a very different conversation” and right then and there is when I knew I had to join John’s fight and the #CheckIt4Andretti mission to raise awareness on the preventative nature of a colonoscopy. Now in his honor, I will continue that fight with his wife Nancy and their children to also provide those who cannot throw up the white flag like I was able and provide colonoscopies to those who are unable to afford it. Who do I check it for? I check it for John, I check it for my husband Bobby and my three boys Dylan, Kasey and Jayce and I will work hard so that you can check it too!

Categories: Testimonial