Event to raise awareness, funds for prostate cancer
Brock A. Stein | 9/5/2017, 1:31 p.m.
The SEA Blue Chicago Prostate Cancer Walk & Run will take place this Sunday, September 10 starting at 8 a.m. in Chicago’s Lincoln Park.
Proceeds raised will help fund the work of Us TOO International, a nonprofit that provides educational resources and support services to the prostate cancer community at no charge.
Sunday’s event, which runs until noon, will be the 13th year for the SEA Blue event which celebrates those who have risen to the challenge to fight prostate cancer, pays tribute to those who have been lost to the disease, and builds a foundation of support for those who need help to combat it in the future.
Plainfield resident Lori O'Connor will be taking part in the event for the first time this year, 6 months after her husband Mike’s successful treatment for prostate cancer.
O’Connor said that her husband’s cancer was caught early when she encouraged him to get a PSA test during a routine doctor’s visit. PSA testing looks for signs of the cancer through a blood screen and is recommended for men 50 and over. O’Connor’s husband, however, was only 48 years old when he was first diagnosed she said.
The Plainfield mom said that she got involved with the SEA Blue fundraiser because she thinks that prostate cancer awareness sometimes gets overshadowed by other public health fundraising efforts.
“You hear a lot about breast cancer awareness,” she said, “My concern now is what about the men?”
She said that men aren’t always eager to talk about their health concerns with their doctors or others which can be dangerous for a disease which doesn’t always present itself in the early stages with any noticeable symptoms.
“Men don’t know that their dads had prostate cancer, that their grandfather had prostate cancer because men don’t talk about it,” she said.
Now 6 months past his treatment, and with a clean blood screen, O’Connor said that she’s hoping that her volunteerism will help someone else’s husband, father or grandfather make the decision to get the PSA test.
“We caught my husband’s early,” she said. “I’m doing this because I hope to save another man’s life.”
In addition to the walk and run, SEA Blue will include a Talk to the Docs education tent, free PSA (prostate-specific antigen) testing, an event t-shirt, free lunch and snacks, one complimentary beer (must be 21 with valid ID), a performance by the Jesse White Tumblers, live music, and a family fun zone for kids. The emcee this year, once again, will be prostate cancer survivor and WGN TV news anchor, Steve Sanders, with a special guest appearance by Dave Fogel of K-Hits 104.3 FM.
Event registration is priced at $45 for 5K adult runner, $40 for adult walker, $30 for 5K child runner, $25 for child walker, and free for children five and under. Prior to the event, participants can earn prizes by raising funds through donations from family and friends. Those who are unable to participate in person, but still want to help raise funds, can register at no charge as a virtual mover.
More information can be found at www.ustoo.org. To register or donate, visit www.seablueprostatewalk.org. For more information call (630) 795-1002 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.