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Our Heroes

Hero of the Month: Meagan Finnerty

Posted on February 9, 2016


Meagan Finnerty didn’t let tragedy stand in her way. After she and her family lost their mother, she set out to find more families like hers. She discovered the Colon Cancer Alliance, and has become a vocal advocate and fundraiser for colon cancer awareness. Since 2014, Meagan and her family’s efforts have raised $10,500 to support our mission. We salute the Finnerty family and honor them as our Hero of the Month. Read more

Coach Mark Nofri Tackles Cancer

Posted on January 26, 2016

Coach Nof

Mark Nofri, head football coach at Sacred Heart University (SHU), was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2014 at just 45 years old. Despite his diagnosis, he continued to do what he loved—coaching through treatment and encouraging his team to stay the course. He even teamed up with us for the Coach Nof Tackles Cancer Campaign, which ended in a blue out tailgate in November and raised more than $7,000 to go towards our mission to knock out colon cancer.

We got a chance to speak with Coach Nof about the campaign, his experience and getting involved to help others living with colon cancer.

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Volunteer of the Quarter: Ricky Castillo and Luke Smith

Posted on January 11, 2016

VOTQ Q1 Collage

We continue to be inspired by our amazing volunteers out there on the front lines spearheading efforts to put colon cancer on the map and changing the face of this disease. That’s why we started the Volunteer of the Quarter feature—to honor and celebrate some of our most passionate, dedicated volunteers and share their stories so you can be inspired, too!

This quarter, we’re honoring two members of our Undy Engagement Committee who have devoted their time to our Dallas/Fort Worth and St. Louis Undy Run/Walks. Ricky Castillo and Luke Smith were both inspired to participate in their local races after family members were diagnosed with colon cancer and they’ve gone above and beyond to make the Undy a success. Read their inspiring stories and learn how you can get involved.

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Hero of the Month: Stan Thomas

Posted on January 7, 2016


Stan Thomas is a superstar volunteer, but when you ask him about all of the things he’s done, he’s sure to give the credit to his wife Paula. Paula was very involved in our Dallas/Fort Worth Undy Run/Walk before her passing in 2014 and Stan continues her work today. In fact, Stan and his family encouraged many people in the Dallas/Fort Worth area to participate in last year’s Undy, led an outstanding fundraising effort and even took home an award with his team! We’re honored to spotlight Undy Engagement Committee member Stan Thomas as our Hero of the Month.

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Honoring My Mother Eartha Kitt This, And Every, Holiday Season

Posted on December 22, 2015

Kitt Shapiro

Colon cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States. This disease affects men and women of all races and ages. It’s also affecting more and more people under 50—that’s right, colon cancer isn’t an “old white man’s disease.”

I have a personal connection to colon cancer. My mother, legendary entertainer Eartha Kitt, died from the disease on Christmas Day in 2008. She was active, fit and never got screened for colon cancer, feeling she was always healthy enough that she didn’t need see a doctor. Looking back, however, she had many symptoms she would shrug off thinking they were nothing more than a momentary discomfort. By the time she went for her first colonoscopy, we discovered she had stage III colon cancer; we learned the cells had migrated towards the liver after her surgery.

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