Movember is an action oriented group and event that seeks to overcome prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men. Each November, the organization asks men to stop shaving, grow a great moustache, and raise money.

Specifically, funds raised in the United States are divided among the Prostate Cancer Foundation, LIVESTRONG, and the Lance Armstrong Foundation. These organizations use the funds to support awareness, education, survivorship, and research.

Mo Bro

“Movember’s primary campaign objective is to raise awareness around men’s health issues, specifically cancers affecting men,” the organization said on its website. “We want everyone to know that most cancers are highly curable if caught in the early stages- including prostate and testicular cancer.  Movember aims to increase early detection, diagnosis and effective treatment, as this will ultimately reduce the number of deaths from cancer.”

There are a significant number of deaths from prostate cancer annually, in fact, just this year more than 33,000 men will die from the disease. Some 240,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2011, and 1 and 6 men will get prostate cancer eventually.

Movember Motivation

Men — or Mo Bros. as they are called during Movember — have many different reasons for participating in the month-long fund raiser.

For some it is an opportunity to get their own health in order, and there are plenty of indications that just participating in Movember will, in fact, lead to positive changes in health-related behavior. But often Movember motivation comes from a story. The story of a friend or family member that fell prey to prostate or testicular cancer.

For me, that story is about my dad who died December 7, 2009. Oddly, he had beaten the prostate cancer, but the treatment itself was more than his 89-year-old body could take.

Just about 18 months before his death, my father was active and alert. He spent his days walking around the neighborhood, shopping (he loved getting a deal), and spending time with his grandchildren. When he was diagnosed it seemed impossible that such a strong man could lose to the disease, could lose his life, but he did. In just weeks, we was bedridden, suffering, and in need of constant care. Without focusing on negative, please allow me to share his obituary with you.

Emanuel “Don” Roggio, 89, of Caldwell, breathed his last at about 10:20 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 7, 2009 – he was at home surrounded by family members.

Flahiff Funeral Chapel, Caldwell will manage his services. His family has chosen a private memorial and burial. Don’s life was one of tireless energy, nearly constant motion, and surprising determination. Born Oct. 22, 1920, in Baltimore, Md., to Italian immigrants, Salvatore and Sebastiana Roggio, he was a contributing member of the Great Generation that fought World War II, drove a manufacturing revolution, and paved the road for modern America.

Often unorthodox and always independent, Don started several small businesses, moved more than 30 times, and rarely lived according to expectations. But, perhaps more than anything else, an unwavering devotion to his family defined his life. If ever his children or grandchildren needed him, he was there at the ready to do anything to help. When trouble came, he was the best possible ally. His devotion was returned in kind.

As Don struggled with health issues, his wife Marjorie was at his side caring for his needs and graciously loving him. All told, Don had one sister and nine brothers, although two of his brothers and his sister died before his parents moved from Sicily to the United States.

He is survived by his wife, Marjorie; his children, Patricia and her husband John Bailey, Salvatore DeBunda and Cheryl Finocchiaro, Martin Roggio and his wife Carol, Mark Roggio and Scott McCune, and Armando Roggio, Sr. and his wife Melisa; 19 surviving grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren; and 17 great great-grandchildren.

Don was a Christian believer, whose last wish was for his children, grandchildren, and entire family to be saved. On the eve of his death, Marjorie spoke quietly with Don’s youngest grandsons as they stood beside his bed.

Today, if you ask Giovanni and Danté, they will tell you that Grandpa is in heaven.

Participating in Movember

It is not too late to support Movember. You can visit my profile page to make a donation or go to the Movember home page.


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