One million strong: colorectal cancer survivors

In February, I helped to host a survivor fashion show to create awareness about living with liver tumors. Among those who modeled were a number of stage 4 colon cancer survivors. Shocking to many were the young ages of our survivors. Out of the nine colon cancer survivors that participated, EIGHT were diagnosed before age 50! Even more notable is the fact that four of us have lived with metastatic disease for more than eight years! The ages are sobering; the longevity exciting!It has been 14 years since my diagnosis with colon cancer, and I'm thankful to see the progress. Way back when we talked about survival of stage 4 colon cancer in months, not years! How things have changed! In the early days of my diagnosis it took a great deal of courage to say "colon" in anything other than a hushed voice.In the years since, we've made great progress thanks to ACOR (ACOR.org), Chris 4 Life (chris4life.org), Colon Cancer Alliance (ccalliance.org), COLONTOWN (facebook.com/colontown), and Fight Colorectal Cancer (fightcolorectalcancer.org) ... among others. Advocates have shared their stories and offered support, taken their voices to Capitol Hill (Call on Congress with Fight Colorectal Cancer is just around the corner!), and created awareness programs that are truly making colon cancer preventable, treatable and beatable!Research has paved the way for numerous novel treatments and procedures. What was dealt to me as a death sentence can often be managed as a chronic disease. For some that have seen their disease spread it is even possible to downstage to NED, or no evidence of disease. We are able to live longer and better in spite of advanced cancer. I have benefited from the research and advocacy these past 14 years. The much needed momentum has provided time, options and hope for cancer patients everywhere. For others, awareness has prevented colon cancer. Be a part of the momentum for colorectal cancer. You can make a difference in the fight by joining Fight Colorectal Cancer's "One Million Strong." Visit the ONE MILLION STRONG TOOLBOX as a guide for how you can be involved in the fight against colorectal cancer.We are stronger together! One million strong!