Legendary Jamaican singer, songwriter and guitarist Bob Marley passed away of melanoma on May 11, 1981, at the age of 36. A sore on Marley’s toe, initially thought to be a sports injury, was later diagnosed as metastatic melanoma.
There are over 10 million cancer survivors in the U.S. and I'm fortunate enough to be one of them. Fourteen years ago I experienced a stage three melanoma tumor (one lymph node involved). But being in the "cancer club" carries with it some obligations. One is to help raise money for increased cancer research - this is one thing that money can help cure. And another is to call someone up when you hear they have just received a cancer diagnosis like the one you once received and tell them," Look, here I am years later, alive and well and you can be also!" That's the kind of lift to the spirits that money can't buy.
"What people take for granted is their skin… Be aware of the dangers, take precaution, and have yourself checked by a dermatologist. It could absolutely make the difference in your life."
Danny Federici (born January 23, 1950) was an icon in American music. He was most known for being the organ, glockenspiel, and accordion player for Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band for 38 years.
I visited my dermatologist, Dr. Ellen Gendler, four years ago for a routine check up. She examined me from head to foot and noticed a small dark mole between my toes. She asked if I remembered it, and I did not. She told me to ask my mother, as mothers are likely to remember these details. My mother did not remember either. Dr. Gendler was concerned and performed a biopsy. It turned out that the mole was a melanoma. Dr. Gendler arranged for me to have it surgically removed and I am so grateful I took the time to have a routine check-up and prevent this from becoming a life-threatening melanoma. I now have regular check-ups with Dr. Gendler and we take a proactive approach to my skin and well-being.
In 2005, Brittany was diagnosed with stage II melanoma. Now, she dedicates her life to creating awareness of the disease and helping people to prevent it.
The very day I lost my closest friend to melanoma, I myself was diagnosed with the same illness. Years later, in 1997 I benefited from California researcher and surgeon, Donald L. Morton's pioneering treatment following metastasis in my lung, and thanks to this I have been able to live a very full professional life ever since. I am thinking now of those we have lost, my friends and my colleagues including the great cellist Boris Pergamenschikow aged only 55, in the hope that further research will help those less fortunate than me in the future.