Our Friend Died of Prostate Cancer Early This Morning

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    May 31, 2015 4:35 PM GMT
    Or more accurately, from the cancer that had spread from his prostate throughout his body, to bones and major organs. His doctor had told him the truth that he was incurable, and his only request was that he have as little pain as possible, and to spend his last days in the city of Wilton Manors among his friends. Both happened. I thought he was rather stoic & brave about it.

    We and other friends had been visiting him regularly, first in the hospital, and then in a Wilton Manors care facility. Some days he could be taken out on pass in a wheelchair, to his favorite places in town, and so he could see more of the people he knew.

    Yesterday his Health Care Surrogate told us he had slipped into a coma, a more rapid decline than had been anticipated, and he only had 48 hours. We planned to see him today (Sunday) for a final leave taking, but he died in the early morning hours. We got the phone call at dawn.

    He was taken for immediate cremation, no wake, per his request. There'll be a remembrance ceremony sometime in the next week or two, TBA.

    I'm glad he could spend his last days among his friends as he wished. And that he lived in a supportive gay community like ours. His Surrogate had volunteered for the job just a couple of months ago, when the initial cancer diagnosis was made, another friend of ours with emergency medical training. He didn't have to do that, not the partner or roommate or anything, just a friend, and the work he had to do as the cancer progressed was very great. But again, that's our community here.

    Well, lots of thoughts and memories going through my head, I had to express that through writing. My husband, meanwhile, is right now doing what HE does to occupy his mind, cooking. A huge pot (and I mean commercial kitchen size) of his pasta meat sauce, made from scratch, that he's preparing as gifts for our friends. About 12 quart-size glass jars will come out of it.
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    May 31, 2015 5:16 PM GMT
    Condolences Art.
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    May 31, 2015 6:38 PM GMT
    woodsmen saidCondolences Art.

    Thanks, on behalf of all of us who knew him. Not a very close friend of ours, but we did see him several times a week, always spoke with him. He was very well liked. It'll be strange not seeing him anymore.
  • roadbikeRob

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    May 31, 2015 6:46 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    woodsmen saidCondolences Art.

    Thanks, on behalf of all of us who knew him. Not a close friend of ours, but we did see him several times a week, always spoke with him. He was very well liked. It'll be strange not seeing him anymore.
    Regardless whether or not he was a close friend, he was still your friend and a fellow human being. It is really sad that he suffered from this horrible disease known as cancer. This should serve as another valid reason to donate to the cancer research clinic or institute of your choice. So much work needs to be done to defeat cancer and to prevent tragic deaths like your friend's.
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    May 31, 2015 8:26 PM GMT
    roadbikeRob said
    This should serve as another valid reason to donate to the cancer research clinic or institute of your choice. So much work needs to be done to defeat cancer and to prevent tragic deaths like your friend's.

    Yes, but people can also help themselves with early detection and prompt treatment when indicated. And that's done with regular doctor visits, and in the case of a male, anticipating that after age 50 the chances of prostate cancer start climbing quickly.

    Our friend was in his early 70s, and would brag to us that he never saw a doctor. And prostate cancer was exactly what I had in mind when I strongly urged him to see one now. I don't know what got him to finally do it, but the cancer was quickly found. No longer in his prostate, where it apparently originated, but metastasized all through his body, and too advanced for any effective treatment. The same thing that happened to my Father.

    And the damn thing is that prostate cancer if caught early is relatively easy to treat successfully. In fact, depending on its extent, aggressiveness, and age of the patient, the doctor may recommend doing nothing at first, merely employ "watchful waiting" with regular monitoring.

    I've still gotta keep my fingers crossed, because I'm inside the 5-year window since my own prostate treatment, the standard time benchmark before a person is considered "cancer-free" for most cancers. Some experts prefer 10 years, and most will refrain from saying "cured", using cancer-free or "in remission" instead.
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    May 31, 2015 9:42 PM GMT
    Upon diagnosis, my mother was told she had six to eight months.

    It turned out to be 6 1/2 weeks.

    What a horrible roller coaster ride that was.

    When I read posts from 20-somethings complaining of being bored, I can only think of how they would feel if told they only had a few weeks left.

    Thank you for being so kind to your friend.
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    May 31, 2015 9:57 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidWell, fortunate for all of us here that YOU were not taken by prostate cancer Mr. Deco!


    Are you actually inserting a dig in such a serious thread? Wow. Just wow.
  • venue35

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    May 31, 2015 10:00 PM GMT
    Sad to hear. You were there for him and that's important.
    Southbeach your comment wasn't necessary.
  • ChicagoSteve

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    May 31, 2015 10:14 PM GMT
    I'm sorry to hear of the loss of your friend. My condolences, Art.
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    May 31, 2015 10:47 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    Radd said
    southbeach1500 saidWell, fortunate for all of us here that YOU were not taken by prostate cancer Mr. Deco!


    Are you actually inserting a dig in such a serious thread? Wow. Just wow.


    Uh... no.


    venue35 saidSad to hear. You were there for him and that's important.
    Southbeach your comment wasn't necessary.


    I suppose neither of you were aware that Mr. Deco himself had prostate cancer several years ago. There was a very real possibility that he would not make it, as he revealed here in very detailed fashion at the time.


    You totally missed the point (on purpose) and your attitude is disgusting. You must be a very bitter man.
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    Jun 01, 2015 3:17 AM GMT
    Southbeach, we all can read quite clearly. And yes we are all aware of Art's close call with cancer. But we all also know that everything out of your mouth is disingenuous. Even if your statement was sincere (which it is not), it was unnecessary to even bring it up. You're truly an evil person.
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    Jun 01, 2015 8:06 AM GMT
    Condolences, Art.

    South Beach, it's obvious that there's badblood between you and Art. Whether Art was diagnosed with prostate cancer or not before, now's just not the time to pick up fights. That's just low and totally uncalled for.

    If you aren't concern or don't really care about it, the least you can do is zip it.
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    Jun 01, 2015 10:29 AM GMT
    Sorry for our loss, Art.
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    Jun 01, 2015 2:26 PM GMT
    Thanks again for all the condolences everyone. As for my own prostate cancer, I'm not sure how much of a "close call" it was, although with a Gleason Score of 8 (out of 10), PSA of 14, about 2/3 involvement, and a cancer judged aggressive it was certainly urgent. The prostate itself can't kill you, and you don't even need the thing to live (although it does make a man's living nicer).

    The real issue is the cancer spreading to other parts of the body, parts you DO need to live. That's what killed our friend and my Father. And even that didn't bother me at first, when the urologist gave me the biopsy results.

    In fact, my husband and I relaxed and were laughing together in the doctor's consulting room once I was told it was likely treatable, the doctor himself joining in. Until he stopped himself and said: "This is a serious matter, I'm supposed to be professional here, not joking around." And we all started laughing again.

    He said he'd rarely seen anyone take the news as well as me. My husband, too, but then he also had prostate cancer, not a stranger to it.

    But then I began the weeks of treatment with the oncologist, and for some reason I became mistrustful. Perhaps it was that "messing with the head" that MuchMoreThanMuscle mentioned.

    I feared I wasn't being told the truth, as my Father hadn't been. And to which I'd been a party. But my doctor assured me he wasn't lying to me (a rather awkward thing to have asked him), a practice that wasn't done with patients anymore. I had a 65-70% survival chance as he had initially told me, not the best, but not all that bad, either, and that's all there was to it. Nothing secret or withheld.

    As for southbeach's little poke that I wrote about it "in very detailed fashion", yes I did, as I'm doing now. Because I think experiences like this should be shared among guys who might face the same thing themselves, or with their loved ones. If we can't be useful resources for each other then I wonder why we even bother posting here.