Walter's Story

Atlanta, GA

I am a stage II colon cancer survivor that was diagnosed at the tender age of 44. I am a husband and a father of 4. I was experiencing severe constipation and cramping that prompted me to take myself to the emergency room, and it was there that blood was found in my stool during a FIT test.  A CT scan of my abdomen was performed and showed a large mass in my colon. I was admitted to the hospital immediately.  On February 15, 2013, I was diagnosed with stage II colon cancer. They took 12 inches of my colon, 13 lymph nodes, and the mass.  After surgery, I had 12 rounds of chemo that left me with a bit of neuropathy and chemo brain, but I am working to beat that too. Every day I am alive I beat cancer’s stinking a** and to date my record is 1,403 wins – 57 losses.

Starting my journey back to health was tough in the beginning. I dwelled in my self-pity for almost two months before I realized that I was given a gift in the midst of this terrible hell I was enduring. I am a man of faith and that played a big role in my battle with colorectal cancer. In fact, I had so much faith in God’s good will for my life that I was angry at the doctors for even suggesting that I could have cancer. After coming to terms with my diagnosis, I found myself in the middle of a pity party. Although I found myself asking why God would allow this to happen to me, I met fellow cancer fighters along the way that made my battle full of purpose.

The gift of serving others, the ability to stand in the gap, and willingness to give my time. I hope to save at least a life a day speaking about the importance of early detection and inspire someone to jump in and serve the greatest good…. loving your neighbor.

Cancer SurvivorPaul Blakely