WEST SPRINGFIELD, Massachusetts (WGGB) — A cancer diagnosis at any age is devastating. When it comes during the prime of one’s life, it’s even worse. But a local man is using his cancer diagnosis to try and make a difference.
Steve Hoey says he’s always been a healthy and pretty lucky guy. He feels he’s led a very charmed life, with two beautiful daughters, a beautiful wife and his family.
But Steve Hoey’s luck changed last September when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. But that was just the beginning. Scans found a mass on Steve’s kidney. It was cancerous. So before he could deal with his prostate cancer he had part of his kidney removed. That took care of that cancer. But Steve says, “Had the surgery on the second one and Dr. Richie came up to the room. Susan and I were there, my daughters were on their way and he said, Steve, everything looks great, everything went well.”
A week later, Steve heard from his doctor again. He continues, “He says to me, we got the pathology report back. They took out five lymph nodes on the right, three were cancerous. They took four on the left, two were cancerous. There was cancer in the seminal vesicle and the tissue.”
It was stage three prostate cancer. “They can’t do anything for me and now I wrestle with dealing with the inevitable and it’s very difficult because you’re being asked on one hand to be positive by everybody, including yourself because there is hope. At the same time, you can’t ring that bell. You’ve got five years on average.”
In the time he has left, Steve Hoey wants to make a difference. He’s established the Bedford Foundation to raise money for prostate cancer research and hopefully a cure. He also wants to help others who are dealing with a terminal cancer diagnosis. Steve says, “I want to coach the families and friends of the terminally ill how to better cope with a terminally ill person.”
He also wants to raise money for the Prostate Cancer Foundation through his foundation. Steve is holding an open house on Friday, September 23 from 5 to 8 at 64 Sean Louis Circle in West Springfield. If you make a donation of $35 you’ll receive a Bedford Foundation coffee mug.
Steve hopes, through him, people will have a better idea of what to say and how to help someone who’s terminally ill. ”A hug and a handshake is all we need. We don’t need a heck of a lot more because the words in most cases mean things. In this case words are meaningless.”
For more information, log on to www.bedford foundation.com.