Jeff Casey: In Conversation

It’s personal for Jeff Casey.  Very personal.  Much more than simply “a cause”.  Jeff is a Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma cancer survivor, and he is on a mission.  He doesn’t want to merely assist in the fight against this deadly disease. Rather, it’s personal – so he has chosen to lead the fight himself.

“Having cancer fundamentally changes who you are, and not just on a physical level.  Having that disease alters the way in which you perceive your life, and ALL life. It is a beast that must be eradicated.”

Jeff is attempting to do exactly that through the creation of the Play For A Cure. He is determined to raise funds through this local event as a means of assisting researchers in their ongoing efforts to isolate the factors and causes associated with different forms of cancer.

“My own experiences in working my way back from my diagnosis revealed to me that there are some specific gaps that still exist within the research side of this fight.  My objective is primarily to alleviate as many of those gaps as possible.”

As an example of one gap that needs to be enhanced, Jeff points to the lack of collaboration. “Through collaboration and targeted efforts, from both a financial and medical perspective, we can help to expedite advancements in this massive undertaking to beat cancer.  Working together is a vital part of this equation, and the entire Essex County region represents a wonderful example of how partnerships and collaborative work can positively impact lives that are affected by cancer.”

Jeff is in full remission, and very grateful to those who stepped up in his battle to come back to a healthy, productive life.  Yet he notes that the scourge of cancer is always present once you have been affected. It can manifest itself in any number of ways.

“You see a swollen lymph node on the neck of one of your children and that sense of uneasiness, of fear, returns.  You learn to deal with that because you must.  But the impact of cancer on a person’s psyche – it never really let’s go of you.”

Jeff is doing much more than telling his cancer story.  He has determined that his life will have an impact on advancing cancer research, the benefits of which all of us in the Windsor area will benefit from for generations to come.

“This battle is now an integral part of my life and the lives of all the members of my family.  We are committed to finding the cure, and we are in this for the long haul.  It is a battle that we must win.  It’s a battle that we WILL win.  Count on it.”

Knowing Jeff Casey, I have no doubt of that outcome.

 

Vern Stenlund

 

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