By Tai Prohaska
Blue polka dots covered Forest Park in St. Louis last Saturday as nearly 2,000 runners and walkers raised awareness at the Colon Cancer Alliance Undy Run. Dotted boxers were official garb for registered participants, and they were often accompanied by T-shirts emblazoned with “bum puns” and scatological humor.
For example, the Hershey Squirts team shirt was a big hit. The poop emoji was popular too. Runners were encouraged to “Race to the End” and walkers were out “Strollin’ for the Colon”. Allsup team members wore “Team Becky” T-shirts with sneaker prints on the back, with the message, “Stomp Out Cancer.” Other shirts encouraged folks to “Protect Your ASSets.”
Humor helps us talk about issues that aren’t easy to address. Of cancers that affect both men and women, colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the U.S. One in 3people diagnosed with colon cancer will die of the disease. But it doesn’t have to be fatal. If detected early or in the pre-cancerous stages, colon cancer can be successfully treated or avoided.
Organizations like the Colon Cancer Alliance are instrumental in raising awareness and improving access to life-saving screenings like colonoscopies. However, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about one-third of adults aged 50 or older (about 22 million people)—the age group at greatest risk of developing colorectal cancer—have not been screened as recommended. In addition, colon cancer diagnoses in people under age 50 have been steadily increasing.
Workplace issues are significant for those diagnosed during their prime earning years. They often need information about applying for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits that provide a monthly income based on what an individual has paid into the system, and access to Medicare.
The Undy Run is one of my favorite events. It not only provides a safe place to run around in my underwear once a year, it also gives me the opportunity to share information on how to apply for disability benefits with individuals and families affected by colon cancer.
This year was really cool because I placed third in my age group for the 5k. Joe McBroom, an Allsup VA- accredited Claims Agent who helps veterans with their disability appeals, took first in his age group.
The Undy Run is also a fundraiser. So, I am willing to part with my award-winning pair of 2017 St. Louis Undy Run boxers, as worn in the photo, to the highest bidder. Submit a bid by clicking on the comment box under the blog headline. All proceeds will go to Team Allsup’s Undy Run fundraising effort.
Next : What to Expect During a Colonoscopy