My name is Shelby and I’m a 17 year-old girl in High School. In May of 2013, my Dad, Wilbur Brown, was diagnosed with Colon Cancer at the age of 45. His diagnosis put a lot of stress on our entire family including my mom, brother and me. My Dad is the head of our household, and it’s been really difficult trying to run everything without him.
Our journey began when my Dad started having blood in his stool. After a little while, he went to the doctor and that’s when they found the cancer. He had surgery for a colostomy bag, went through 12 chemo treatments, and then went through radiation with a small dose of chemo on top of it.
My entire family has received a lot of support from friends and family. They help us with some food and bills. Dad couldn’t work for a long time so the help is really nice and means a lot to my family. Seeing my dad go through this is heartbreaking and I try to do everything in my will to help him. I’ve been by his side every step of the way and will continue to be there for him.
My Dad just finished his treatments and went back to work. He will get a cat scan on April 8th and another on the 12th. If everything looks good, he will be eligible for surgery after that.
We participated in this year’s Get Your Rear in Gear Philadelphia Race last weekend with a team of nine. It was a lot of fun, especially because we’re helping to find a cure for colon cancer. We made shirts that say, “I wear blue for someone who means the world to me!” And it’s true. My Dad does mean the world to me and I’m so happy that he’s one step closer to beating this disease.
To me, “Get Your Rear in Gear” means to never give up. Keep fighting! When you’re in the middle of treatment, things seem really hard. But no matter what, you have to always keep your head up and keep fighting. One love, one cure. We have to always keep fighting this disease.