“I am not afraid to let people know that I am a prostate cancer survivor,” says Mack Luchey, iconic owner of Doris Records, Western New York’s oldest record store. “If you’re ever diagnosed with prostate cancer, I’m here to tell you that it is not a death sentence, but rather just the beginning of the fight.”
After undergoing five biopsies, Mack was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2003 and opted for radiation therapy as his treatment. During his treatment period he read, exercised, trusted in God, continued to work, and, in his words, “took it one day at a time.” Mack, now a prostate cancer survivor for more than ten years, spreads the word to whoever will listen about the importance of prostate cancer awareness. He continues to share his personal story to customers on a daily basis.
Mack is a founding member of Men Allied for the Need to Understand Prostate Cancer (MAN UP), a prostate cancer awareness advocacy group. MANUP was formed in 2008 and is comprised of a diverse group of men, many of whom are prostate cancer survivors. Their mission is to provide educational resources to men most at-risk for prostate cancer in the hopes that it might assist them in making informed decisions on issues related to prostate cancer, early detection, treatment and survivorship. Members of MANUP have collaborated with prostate cancer experts at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center on programs and initiatives designed to educate men about this disease throughout the Western New York region.
“As a survivor, I take it as a personal responsibility to try to help those who are either unaware of prostate cancer or are in need of support in the event of learning they have this particular cancer,” says Mack. “As a man in general, and as a person of color specifically, I truly believe we are obligated to ‘have each other’s back’ if presented with the challenge of cancer. On occasion a customer may come in, knowing that I am a survivor, and tell me that he has prostate cancer and ask for advice on what to expect, namely because he is scared. Whenever this occurs, I always say, ‘piece of cake’, and invite him to my office for discussion. I really love doing this.”
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Unfortunately Mr. Luchey passed away in early 2018, but his legacy as a passionate advocate for prostate cancer awareness lives on.