August 28, 2011
Philadelphia Area Detective On the Case to Fight Colon Cancer with the Undy 5000
Philadelphia, PA (August 23, 2011) – Arty Erle, a detective with the Upper Darby Township Police Department, is doing more than just running a 5K in Philadelphia to fight colon cancer – he’s part of the planning committee to bring the Undy 5000 5K Run/Walk back to Philly for the fourth consecutive year.
After being diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer at age 35 in December 2007, Arty decided he wanted to be more involved in the Colon Cancer Alliance (CCA), a national patient advocacy organization dedicated to ending the suffering caused by colon cancer. After doing some research, he found the Undy 5000 to be the perfect option for him. In 2010, Arty formed team “Stolen Colon,” comprised of 80 friends, relatives and coworkers, and ran in the Philadelphia Undy 5000. This year, Arty and his team will be running again, but he is also involved in the planning process, delivering literature to gastroenterologists and oncologists in an effort to encourage participation and sponsorship of the event.
The 4th Annual Philadelphia Undy 5000 will be held on Saturday, September 10, at MLK Drive next to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It is a 5K and 1-Mile Fun Run to fight colon cancer, and participants are encouraged to run in their underwear to bring attention to the area affected by the second-leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. All registered participants are given a pair of commemorative Undy 5000 boxers instead of a typical raceday T-shirt.
“Every year, the Philadelphia Undy 5000 shatters fundraising records” said Andrew Spiegel, Chief Executive Officer of the Colon Cancer Alliance. “Last year, participants raised almost $140,000 to help in the fight against colon cancer. As a Philly resident, it makes me proud to know this city cares so much about the cause.”
In remission since March 2010, Arty is thankful for the early diagnosis. Although he had suffered from ulcerative colitis in the past, Arty experienced no colon cancer symptoms and had no family history of the disease, which increases one’s risk. It wasn’t until his third routine colonoscopy that he learned he had colon cancer.
“All of my friends and family members, and even my coworkers are aware of the importance of colon cancer screenings now,” Arty said. “Even the ones under 50 are talking to their families to find out about any history of the disease to ensure they know what next steps to take.”
Arty hopes to set a new personal best by recruiting a team of 100 this year. His goal is to get at least one-fourth of his 130-person police department to come out and participate in the 5K with him.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Arty said. “I love the idea of the Undy 5000. It’s a great cause and raising awareness is obviously something I’m passionate about.”
If you would like to learn more about the Undy 5000, please visit www.undy5000.org.
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The Colon Cancer Alliance is a national patient advocacy organization dedicated to ending the suffering caused by colon cancer. In order to increase screening and survivorship rates, the Colon Cancer Alliance provides education and patient support, furthers research efforts, and conducts advocacy work across the country.