Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Cancer Project (warning you will cry)

Hello Everyone, I am working on a book about people's experiences with Cancer 

The Initial request came from the fact that I had a lot of subscribers on youtube and I wanted to use this for a good cause.

 I have now set myself a challenge and a donation page for my charity trek I am going to set out on.
pelease visit

Here is the latest stories I have recieved

If you want to help out and contribute please scroll to the bottom of the blog post and see in blue the questionaire.

Hi again Dom
On that photo is my grandfather.
That was the last photo taken of him when he was alive.
When he was 6 years old he startet to smoke. Most of his time he was
working in minings so his lungs were in very bad condition.
Few years ago doctors said to him that if he does not stop smoking his
legs will stop working and they would have to cut them off. After that
he smoked lesser than before but he never stopped to smoke. His legs
were very weake so he falled down some times, his legs were not
carring him.
9 month ago he had terrible pain in his chest, doctors said that it
was cancer and it was on the last stage, they could not help him. He
was given only medicine but in the end even the morfi did not help,
pain was too strong. He died 5 month ago.
And one bad thing more, after my grandfather death his son, mine
godfather smokes even after that. He had examined his lungs and
doctors found something black there, but he just keep on smoking.

Just a little story from me.
And sry for mistakes.

Email 24 Feb 2011

Hi Dom
My name is Jeremy Walker (45) and I’m writing about my son Cody Walker aged  11.  Cody was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma (Bone Cancer) in his right tibia in January 2008 .
At the time the only symptoms he suffered was an aching leg.  These innocent symptoms resulted in him being misdiagnosed, but after two months Cody had a biopsy early in the year and this is when our world fell apart.
I genuinely felt as though my heart  was physically breaking as the news was given to us by the oncologist.  Even at eight years old  Cody seemed to understood the severity of what we were being told.  Holding Co and watching the tears roll down his face, we slowly began to  realise what lay ahead.  In common with many people out there exposed to this dreadful disease, these memories will haunt us forever.
Cody began his treatment the following day and underwent a year of Chemotherapy and a series of operations to replace his tibia, lower part of his femur and knee with a titanium prosthesis and regain some mobility in his leg.

As I’m sure is fairly common under these circumstances, we went into “autopilot” as a family juggling work, hospital and daily routine.  The word “Chemotherapy” is heard very regularly but we were totally naive as to what it actually consisted of.  For Cody it meant having a double Hickman Line inserted into a major vein via his chest, which would enable him to receive medication and have blood taken.  This very alien device soon became his friend and simplified these processes dramatically.
Cody received a series of drugs (His Chemotherapy) via his line for three to four days every two weeks for which he stayed in hospital along with his Mum or myself.  It’s a twenty four hour process with no rest and to watch your baby receiving this concoction of drugs is heart-breaking.  The helplessness you feel as a parent is impossible to convey.   In Cody’s view, one of the worst procedures he underwent was a stem cell harvest (to be used if his treatment didn’t work).
Again we had to sit by and watch our little boy have a tube the size of your finger inserted into his groin and then sit there all day while a machine processed his blood had stem cells removed and stored.
I’ve said it many times, but I am absolutely amazed and so very grateful that children are so resilient and trusting, even when confronted by ordeals such as these.  As an adult everything in your being screams this is wrong but my little boy led there and took it.
The loss of hair came and went, along with lots of unplanned stays in hospital due to infections picked up  as a result of reduced immunity (neutropenia).   These unplanned stays of four days plus became Cody’s number one dislike and the constant monitoring of Co’s  temperature which indicated possible infection were always a very tense time.  The worry of maintaining his weight due to loss of appetite, coupled with sickness and headaches became major parts of Cody’s and our life as a family.  
His friends and relatives became our rock and visited often, both in Birmingham where he received his surgery and in Bristol where he received his Chemotherapy and we live.  Looking back I have idea how we would have managed without the love shown by those around us.  So thank you all again guys!
Living life “a day at a time”  sounds quite corny, but if anything has come from this I would say we have come to value things in a very different way.  Jobs have been lost and income reduced, but to see Cody here, active and playing with our two other children is a gift and something we thought at times would quite possibly never be our reality.
For those just receiving their diagnosis, my heart goes out to you.  The panic, confusion and disbelief of what is being told to you are feelings so raw you will remember them forever.  But Cody is our living proof of success.  We of course are not naive enough to think everything is perfect.  The constant shadow of cancer never really leaves, but somehow we cope and are grateful to be able to kiss our child goodnight and enjoy our time together.
The images I’ve attached show the reality of Cancer and its treatment as well as feeling you’re on your own.  the underwater image is a recent picture of Co. who is now in remission but will undergo many procedures enabling his right prosthetic leg to grow as he gets older.
Some more of Cody’s images are here:-
If you feel any images would be suitable for inclusion we would all feel very proud:-
It is in my view impossible to remain unchanged by an ordeal such as this and in my heart I know I all of us have been marked by these years.  We all carry on as a family,  experiencing the normal stresses of family life,  but it is at times such as typing this email and looking at past photographs that you realise how much hurt one blocked out while going through that phase in our life. Hopefully we will continue the healing process into the future.   We all love you Cody.
As a family we’re not religious but the song “Hallelujah” was playing during Cody’s last Chemotherapy session and holds a very special place in our hearts.:-
I’d like to add real superheroes of this world are also undoubtedly the Nurses, Doctors, Surgeons and other staff who care, comfort and cure.  
Thank you too Dom for coming up with the idea.  You’re a good guy
Kind regards
Jeremy, Sarah, Brittany, Cody and Jed (The Walker family)


Subject: my cancer story
From: Joseph Message: My name is Joseph Feeley and I am 21 years old and I have
cancer. I found your site through youtube as i have recently taken up
photography as a way of coping with my illness and also as a way to
express to others the way that I see and feel the world. In January of
this year 2010 I was shocked to find out that I was diagnosed with
Ewing's Sarcoma a very rare form of bone cancer. I found out while
investigating the severe pain that I was experiencing in my hip and
spinal bones. I will never forget the day I was diagnosed... I was
ready to return to college to begin my baseball season at the end of my
winter break when my parents received a call from my doctor saying that
the pain in my back and hip was not a sports injury, which was what we
had originally thought, but rather cancer. The news blindsided me and
at first I was in shock as this surreal prognosis couldn't actually be
true. It wasn't until I saw my father weeping which was when I knew it
was really happening. Before that moment I had never seen him cry
before. I met with the oncologist the next day and after a period of
testing they found that it was Ewing's Sarcoma and that it had
metastasized to over 100 areas in my body. They informed me that I
needed to start treatment immediately but told me that I had a very
slim chance of surviving the chemotherapy let alone the disease with
only 10% of patients who have my subclass of Ewing's reaching 5 years.
If you have never had chemotherapy then it is impossible to fully
describe just how terrible it really is. Apart from what it does to
your body physically with how bad it makes you feel whats worse is that
it strips you emotionally as well. After spending two weeks in the
hospital from a receiving sepsis caused from the effects of the chemo I
returned home and looked in the mirror before i entered the shower.
The lifeless figure that looked back terrified me. It's as if it were
not a mirror but rather a window in time that showed me one of the
unfortunate souls that endured the holocaust. Naked and stripped of
life and hope.

I never knew what this monster was until it took over
me. Sure I had heard of it before and felt bad for people who had it
but that's where my heart ended. It wasn't until it affected me that I
understood. Cancer doesn't just destroy your body, it destroys your
soul, and everything in life that you knew before forever changes and
you never look at things the same way again. But I havent given up, I
am determined to fight till I can no longer fight and I am doing
everything in my power to get better. One of the things that upset me
is that there are so many other treatments available that people can do
that the doctors don't tell them or don't know about themselves and
simple things like changing the way you eat that can have profound
affects on healing cancer and preventing it in the first place. These
are things that I have researched and discovered since I have been
diagnosed but things that were never told to me by my doctors. The
fact is I was ignorant, I didnt care about cancer until it affected me
and for the most part that goes for the majority of people. I wish I
knew then what I know now, I wish others knew what I know now, maybe I
wouldn't have cancer today. I don't know how to submit a photo but I
took one of myself. I shows me looking down at my port which i receive
my chemotherapy through and I am surrounded by darkness. That's how
cancer makes you feel, a prisoner inside yourself.

Subject: YouTube Video on
From: Stephen ]
Message: I have
been a subscriber of your videos for a while. As a amateur
photographer with a Nikon SLR, I find your videos to be excellent. And
thank you for those previous videos.

But your Cancer video really touched my soul. I do not have Cancer,
yet. I am 55 and I worry about getting Cancer or having my wife or
children getting Cancer.

I am on the committee for the Philadelphia Bike-a-thon which raises
approximately 1.5 million US dollars for the American Cancer Society
annually. Our one day events have over 4500 cyclist and about 400
volunteers all raising funds for Cancer research and supports those who
have Cancer.
You can check our web site at

I am sharing your Cancer video via the Bike-a-thon's Facebook page.

Your video hits the reason why I do Bike-a-thon, thank you for putting
together a video.

Best Regards (and keep up the excellent videos)
Stephen Ehrlich
Flickr photos at

Subject: Cancer
From: Patrick Beard
Message: Dom,

The last video you posted was very hard, but exciting for
me to watch. I am Pat from North Carolina, USA.

Last April my mom was diagnosed with Ovarian cancer, last June she had
a full hysterectomy to remove the cancer. While the doctors where in
surgery they realized that the cancer had spread beyond their
capabilities of treatment.

Mom continued to deteriorate after the surgery, and in July was given 2
weeks to live. She made it a month, and on August 8th, 2009 pancreatic
cancer took my moms life. She was only 52 years old.

I would love to contribute to your book. However, have you considered
that Cancer, it doesn't just involve the person that has it... it
impacts their entire family. My life is change forever because of it.

I would love to both find a way to tell mom's story, but also the story
of my family's journey of LIVING while mom was DIEING, and after she

Let me know what you think and THANK YOU FOR THIS VISION AND

Patrick Beard
North Carolina, USA

Subject: cancer
richard martin
Message: Dom

I have been watching your videos for 3 or 4 moths and really enjoy
them, i am a recent newbie to DSLR photography and your videos are very

Imagine my suprise when i log on to You Tube tonight and see your post
on Cancer

You see I lost my dear father to cancer in January
and here I am the day before my birthday- the first one without my dad
wondering how i will get through tomorrow ( I will be 44 tomorrow but i
still cry like a baby nearly every day over my loss) and ten i see your
idea for a book - FANTASTIC It matches my interest in photography with
my NEED to do something positive for the memory of my father

Please send me the questionaire

Thank You


1) Name and age - Mark Skinner, 46
2) What is your relationship with Cancer - Survivor

3) What cancer did(do) you (your relative/friend) have (had) and what is its (your) current cancer status. - Non Hodgkin's Lymphoma
4) What treatment are (did) you having (had) - Loads of chemo and a bone marrow transplant
5) When and what was it that made you get checked out for cancer. - admitted to hospital with breathing problems
6) What was your reaction when you were given the bad news. what did you do, where did you go, how did you feel? - scared.
7)After your initial reaction (first day) how did you deal with the situation - couldn't do anything other than just laying in a hospital bed.
8)Can you for the benefit of others describe the treatment you had (if you don't want to that is ok) what was the worst bits and what was the best (if any) bits were there. I.e. the cancer staff, the losing of hair, the explanation of the treatment, the worry after the treatment with your lowered immune system. support from friends and family etc -Worst - chemo for about 10 months on and off. Loads of vomiting. Being an in-patient, side effects etc. No best bits at all.

9) What got on your nerves, how did you deal with it. - One or two of the other patients were intellectually lacking.
10) Have you had anything positive come from your experience, (ie self understanding, family relationships, confidence, life affirming etc) It can sometimes make a good conversation topic.

11) What advice do you have for anyone who has just been diagnosed. - Trust the medical team.
12) Regarding the Photo (photos) you have supplied, why have you chosen that image, what is it showing.
13) have you changed in anyway. - Possibly, but nothing very significant.
14) What song best describes you? - "How soon is now" by The Smiths.


1) Name and age
Ian McGuinness. 33
2) What is your relationship with Cancer
I work for an oncology communication/education company. Deal with cancer day-in-day-out
11) What advice do you have for anyone who has just been diagnosed.
A lot of cancers are not the death-sentence they used to be. Remain positive but be prepared for tough times, as it will get tough!. Read up on relevant websites the current treatment guidelines. Ask about what clinical trials are currently ongoing. Remember that you can never ask too many questions

14) What song best describes you?

Beautful day – U2

Hello Dom
A very heart felt video you posted regarding the book. At first we were not sure if we wanted to participate, but my wife would like to. Back in 2007 she was diagnosed with Placental Site based cancer (Very Rare) as a result of her pregnancy. After a year long battle against the disease that quickly resulted in Bally loosing her ability to walk after the cancer had metastaized to her spinal column, both Bally Mother and Daughter are now fine and well. With Bally also now able to walk in a pair of heels.

So Bally's story is more of one of recovery, albeit a very difficult journey with a new born child at the time. I have some photos during that period, but not too many, that you could perhaps take a look through; no master pieces. I have also attached a recent photo, that for me captures Bally's fight to get back to work and the normality that had been before. And to be able to share that with her family.

We would also have a suggestion on where some of that money raised could go, and that would be to the 3 units in the UK (Edinburgh, Sheffield, London) that specialise in Choriocarcinoma. This Cancer can hit families hard at a time when their lives are already changing through the arrival of a new born child.

So let us know


We also had no clue, it's actually quite a story that included a couple of rare things that can happen through pregnancy; full eclampsia followed by a bout of Cancer :) Bally keeps saying she will get round to writing a book one day.
I think you should also talk with Bally, we will also fill out the questionnaire.

We can figure out the photos once you have the background. I was thinking perhaps a series of shots; side by side.
1. Pregnant (think we have one)

2. Sick (some to choose from)

3. Recovered (could take one, or use one that we have)


1) Name and age
*Dimas Hardiatmo, 25

My father's name is Sriyono, 58

2) What is your relationship with Cancer

*He is my father. He is basically our family's backbone.

3) What cancer did(do) you (your relative/friend) have (had) and what is its (your) current cancer status.

*He was diagnosed with prostate cancer when I was 19. He got the cancer taken care off, but has not fully recovered until today. There is no sign of cancer, but bladder and fatigue problems are the problem post the surgery.

4) What treatment are (did) you having (had)

*Cancer removal surgery, radiation. and, 6-monthly check up.

5) When and what was it that made you get checked out for cancer.

*He was an active person before the cancer verdict. He played tennis a lot and there was weird feeling when he did certain maneuvers.

6) What was your reaction when you were given the bad news. what did you do, where did you go, how did you feel?

*I was questioning about his future existence in my life. Whether he will be there in my future important moments in life? Thinking about my mother. He is a religious person and i was questioning about God's plan behind it. There were times that I stopped going to church.

7)After your initial reaction (first day) how did you deal with the situation

* It was an agony to remember. I didn't really know exactly how i felt about it because i knew my mother was more destroyed than me, but she was still able to smile and helped him in daily basis activities. Just trying to be supportive and put aside all the anger and sorrow.

8)Can you for the benefit of others describe the treatment you had (if you don't want to that is ok) what was the worst bits and what was the best (if any) bits were there. I.e. the cancer staff, the losing of hair, the explanation of the treatment, the worry after the treatment with your lowered immune system. support from friends and family etc

* The worst part:

1. because he was diagnosed with an early stage of prostate, radiation was the treatment after the cancer removal surgery.

2. He didn't have the losing hair because radiation was not as harsh as chemotherapy, but the immune system was hugely affected.

3. He was an active person, as I've mentioned before. But, after the treatment, he could not be as the man he used to be. Bladder problem and fatigue problem are the issue.

behind this.

*The better part:

1. each our family member becomes closer to one and another.

2. And, we can more appreciate other people.
9) What got on your nerves, how did you deal with it.

I did blame God after I heard the news, but my father told me that he got better because of God as well. Therefore, i somewhat try to be more religious.

10) Have you had anything positive come from your experience, (ie self understanding, family relationships, confidence, life affirming etc)

I can be more "let go".

11) What advice do you have for anyone who has just been diagnosed.

Try to have faith that any scenarios will lead to something good eventually. And, keep fighting.

12) Regarding the Photo (photos) you have supplied, why have you chosen that image, what is it showing.

My father is only a high school graduate, but he worked hard for our family. Just so that we all can have a better life. I am originally from Indonesia, which is a third world country.I was born and lived there, now i am a student in America. He worked hard, so he could send all his kids to have better educations and futures. I have two older sisters that have married and have nice lives. In this picture, he is looked old, worn out, and tired. I can somewhat relate that he has been through a lot of things for us.

13) have you changed in anyway.

I always try to be a better person.

14) What song best describes you?

Kaiser chiefs - Learnt My lesson well

Hi Dom,

Thanks for the invites to the cause and the project.

I’d love to get involved with the project.

I don’t have a cancer, but I was diagnosed with diabetes a year ago, and I sort of understand the “death sentence” and “how do I live the rest of my life” phases. Diabetes are not as fatal as cancer, maybe, but complications are deadly and the risks that I live with are constantly in the back of my mind, daily.

I have two girlfriends that battled cancer. They both are in remission, but I know the battle has changed their lives forever.

It’d be an honor to be able to capture their emotions visually and to share with others who are directly or indirectly affected by this disease.

Please let me know how we can start – questionnaire that you mention, do you have a standard format that you send out to contributors?
Thank you for starting this project – I am all for bringing HOPE to those who need it.
Koko Hunt

Photographer / Visual Artist


I believe after many have coped with the fact that they have cancer they will turn to their god in search of guidance and hope. In the Southwest of the United States there is a small church in Chimayo, New Mexico called the Santuario de Chimayo, where many who have fallen ill come to search for a miracle. As the story goes, an early Chimayo settler was performing penances when he noticed a light coming from the ground, he went to the location of the light and dug up a crucifix known as "Nuestro Señor de Esquipulas" (Our Lord of Esquipulas). The settler then took the crucifix to a church in a nearby town, the next morning the crucifix had disappeared. It was found again that day in the exact location where it had been found previously. After this had happened twice more it was decided that the crucifix was supposed to stay in that location and in 1814 the Santuario de Chimayo was built on the ground where the crucifix had been found. It is believed that the dirt where the crucifix had been unearthed holds healing powers.

Today many people make pilgrimages to the Santuario to acquire this holy dirt in hope of a healing miracle. Some will rub the holy dirt on their body, usually on their affected area. Some come to take dirt to loved ones who cannot make the journey. Adjacent to the room of the holy dirt is another room where people have left memorabilia of their healing stories; it is filled with crutches, charms, pictures, etc.

While I myself have been fortunate not to have been diagnosed with cancer, members of my family and extended family have not been so lucky. My Grandfather on my mother’s side was diagnosed with prostate cancer and survived the cancer, and my aunt is also a recent survivor of breast cancer. While I was too young to remember whether my grandfather used the holy dirt, I do know that my aunt made the pilgrimage.

When I heard of this project the first thing that popped into my mind was the Santuario and the hope it gives to those who have been diagnosed with cancer. I wanted to create a portrait that was unique and unstaged. Coincidentally, on a recent trip to the church I noticed a man, Alex, who was deep in prayer and right away I could tell he was no ordinary tourist; his body language seemed very sincere in prayer. After he was done, I approached Alex and told him about the project and asked if I could photograph him. He agreed and on the way to the room with the well of the holy dirt he began to explain to me why he was there on this day.

Alex is an Arizona native and has made the pilgrimage to Chimayo many times in his life. He remembers coming here as a child about 60 years ago with his parents who believed in and taught him about the healing power of the dirt. More recently, he had visited the church because he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. He survived his cancer and attributes it to the dirt and his god. This day however Alex had made the journey to the church to pray and collect dirt for his brother who has recently been diagnosed with an aggressive cancer that is spreading. The image I took shows Alex in prayer, kneeling before his god, next to "el pocito" the small pit of holy dirt.

I hope the story and this photo inspire those with cancer to find hope not only in medicine but in faith and miracles. For those who are interested you can learn more about the church at You can even request holy dirt to be sent to you. I also hope that some of you will make the pilgrimage, it is truly a remarkable place and as the priest Father Roca says “The Good Lord listens here.” Please feel free to contact me with any questions.


Gabriel Andrade

Hello Dom,

Attached is a word document with my story and 2 photographs of my dad, before and during his battle with Cancer.

There's nothing more eye opening than being told that a loved one is suffering from a terminal illness. My dad was diagnosed with Small Cell Lung Cancer in February 2008, one week before my birthday and ever since then my whole life and the one of those around me has forever changed. My dad had been a smoker for most of his life but it wasn't until he found that my sister was pregnant and was about to make him a grandfather that he decided to quit smoking. He did so without the help of chewing gum or patches, just cold turkey and for that I was very proud of him.

They say the first step to quitting is the most difficult, but he made it look easy, however, shortly after he had stopped smoking the first signs of illness started to appear. He was constantly coughing and was waking up swollen from his face. After several doctor visits no problems were found, only thing that he was prescribed was cough medicine but that alone had little to no effect. It wasn't until he had an x-ray of his chest done that my family and I were presented with one of the worst news you could get from a doctor. My dad had a huge tumor in his chest so big in size that it was covering one of the main arteries supplying blood to his brain, hence the swelling of his face.

So many thoughts go through your mind when you're told something of that magnitude. At first we could not believe it. We thought that things like that only happened in movies, that it could never happen to us, but it certainly did and it wasn't easy to understand. My dad however, being as strong as he had been all his life seemed to be the most optimistic about the whole situation and rather than sit there and ask "why?" he wanted to know how, how can we fix this? Doctors had told us that Small Cell Lung Cancer even though a very aggressive type of cell, was known to respond well to Chemotherapy and that the best course of action would be to get started with the treatment as soon as possible, which my dad was more than willing to do. After many Chemotherapy and radiation sessions we got a bit of good news when the doctors told us that the huge tumor my dad had was shrinking very rapidly to the point that it was almost gone. For my dad and my family it seemed too good to be true, you really can beat Cancer we thought, he felt invincible with the battle that he had just won and we felt that after all this we could go back to living a normal life again.

It wasn't too long after that when everything started to turn bad again. My dad had gone in for a routine CT Scan when the doctor presented us with yet another set of bad news. Some of the cells had moved to his brain, an area of the body that doctors said has no reaction to Chemotherapy. My dad felt he was presented with a new challenge and that there was still a war to win and without any hesitation he again asked "how do we fix this?" instead of asking why it had happened. Doctors had recommended a treatment called Gamma Knife Surgery, a type of radiation therapy that focused only on the areas affected by the cancer cells instead of on the brain as a whole. Even though it seemed like a risky surgery my dad as always felt very optimistic about it, willing to give it his all. The procedure itself was hard to go through not only for my dad but also for my family and myself. A metal frame had to be screwed on to my dad's skull to hold a big clear plastic helmet with tiny little holes that would pinpoint the exact location of the cancerous cells inside my dad's brain. It wasn't a pretty sight, to see a loved one having to go through something that looked so painful. Going from seeing my dad healthy, working and being able to take care of the family to constant hospital visits, hair loss and deteriorating health in such a short period of time had taken a huge toll in all of us. My mom had decided to close her own child care business, my sister, who worked at a bank full time had the new task of secretary, scheduling doctor appointments and keeping track of my dad's medication, and I also had to constantly take time off from work to drive my dad to his Chemotherapy sessions since he had stopped driving due to ongoing seizures. Gamma Knife Surgery had done little to improve my dad's health after 3 visits in about a 4 to 5 month period. 1 year after being first diagnosed with Cancer, doctors had finally told us there was very little that could be done and gave my dad only a few more months to live. Never having dealt with the death of someone so close to me I didn't know how to react to the news. I felt angry, sad, helpless. I felt like the doctors could have done more to heal my dad but I knew it wasn't their fault.

At the beginning of 2009 my dad's illness had taken over him. He was unable to speak and was constantly falling. He had to be followed by either my mom or myself as he went about the house. Many sleepless nights went by trying to make sure my dad didn't hurt himself when trying to get from one room to the other, to the point that we would get mad at him for not listening to us. Something that I feel guilty for to this day. We weren't really mad at him, we were mad at the whole situation, we were mad at the fact that my dad wasn't himself anymore, at the fact that Cancer was taking him away from us right in front of our face and there was nothing we could do about it. Finally, March 4th 2009 at 10:49pm my dad lost his war against Cancer, he did so peacefully in his room surrounded by my mom, my sister, his 2 grandkids, his only sister and brother-in-law that had flown in from Venezuela that same day and everyone that loved him and had been behind him in this battle since day one. For 13 months he gave it his all to confront a monster that he knew had taken millions of others before him. For 13 months he fought without even thinking for a moment that he would lose, always optimistic and always asking "how?" instead of "why?"

Forgot to add, the first photograph was taken October 2007 when my dad’s first granddaughter was born. The reason why I chose this one was because she was the main reason my dad had decided to stop smoking. The second photo was taken in February 2009, a month before he passed away.
Wish you the best on this very honorable work you’re doing
Gerardo Nava


To be told that you have cancer is a horid thing. People deal with it in different ways. Some get angry, some cry, some go quiet. Others keep it a secret, some feel guilty, others look for someone or something to blame. But everyone thinks, why.

I don't have cancer but I believe it is a disease that will affect everyone looking at this photo either directly or indirectly. The rate of cancer diagnosis has increase somuch that I think people should not think if they might or might not but when and what kind will develop.This image to me is how I think I would deal with the diagnosis if i were told I had cancer. I would go quiet and spend time thinking about my life and what i have done, and what i wish i could do. I would try to only have small regrets.

Sometimes it is good to think about these things before you have to. Make yourself think what you would want to be thinking if you were in that situation and change the way you are or the things you do so that the thoughts you have at that time are not of remorse or big regrets.

My heart goes out to anyone who is suffering or knows someone close to them that is suffering.

Please if you see a charity coin collection please give what you can. Every little helps.


Dom Bower

I want your help to make a photo book about people with or who have had cancer. will you help?

If you would be willing to write around a 1000 words regarding your experience and provide a photo, I will add it to the book.

If you get stuck for words I have made a questionnaire to help you break down what other people may want to hear and read about.

the email goes like this


Hi thanks for getting in contact.

Below is the questionnaire regarding your experience with cancer. If you want to just write your experience go to it (try and keep it to less than 1000 words), if you want to follow the questionnaire that is fine also, you do not have to answer every question it is more a guide to help you figure out what to say and what other may want to hear.

This is not exclusive to people who have or have had cancer but is also open to the family members and close friends of people who have experienced the illness. Please provide an image of yourself if you have had cancer, if you want to make an image of how you felt at the time please feel free to make one. If you want to just provide an image taken at the time that too is fine. Old photos are fine two. but if you can send the best quality possible that will be better. If you are the family relative then please provide an image of yourself as well if you can make one depicting your relationship with cancer in some way that would be good.

My hope is that we can provide motivational images or memorable images, with stories that others will help, inform, inspire and give hope or advice to everyone who will read it.

Please also forward this onto anyone who you think could help with providing images and stories and advice or forward onto those who may benefit from reading the stories.


Questionnaire (if you want to just write please just go ahead, this is just for help)

1) Name and age

2) What is your relationship with Cancer

3) What cancer did(do) you (your relative/friend) have (had) and what is its (your) current cancer status.

4) What treatment are (did) you having (had)

5) When and what was it that made you get checked out for cancer.

6) What was your reaction when you were given the bad news. what did you do, where did you go, how did you feel?

7)After your initial reaction (first day) how did you deal with the situation

8)Can you for the benefit of others describe the treatment you had (if you don't want to that is ok) what was the worst bits and what was the best (if any) bits were there. I.e. the cancer staff, the losing of hair, the explanation of the treatment, the worry after the treatment with your lowered immune system. support from friends and family etc

9) What got on your nerves, how did you deal with it.

10) Have you had anything positive come from your experience, (ie self understanding, family relationships, confidence, life affirming etc)

11) What advice do you have for anyone who has just been diagnosed.

12) Regarding the Photo (photos) you have supplied, why have you chosen that image, what is it showing.

13) have you changed in anyway.

14) What song best describes you?

Thank you for your input

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