Name: Robert E. Swasey
Age: 62 Years Old
Hometown: Delmar, NY
1) What is your connection to the Capital region? I grew up in Delmar, New York. I started a landscape business in 1972 and over the years bought and built commercial property in Voorheesville, New York. After this head and neck cancer I’ve been semi- retired, not by choice.
2) Who or what is the inspiration behind your participation/donation in this year’s Race for Hope? Dr. Awwad and Dr. Sara Scheid have been a big part of me being alive today. There are not enough words to thank them so hopefully I can support what they are a big part of.
3) Were there area resources that may not be easy to find, that perhaps could help others in a similar situation that you found yourself in at your initial diagnosis? The cancer care center was great at St Peters Hospital. It was like having family with you all the time. The American Cancer Society was great -if you need something just ask. My personal experience was a 7 month battle to find what was ailing me after heart, lungs, sleep study, endoscopy, allergies and anxiety. Dr. Awwad finally found a lump in my neck. So my point is you need to get to the right doctors.
4) You are currently in remission. How has your experience with the “c word” diagnosis changed your day to day living? “Remission”- the best word you could ever hear. Before I had cancer it was a word. After experiencing the chemo and radiation I have a deep emotion for anyone going thru this.
I now get up have a cup of coffee with my girlfriend, (who without her I would have never made it thru this) play with the dog , work thru the day until my body tells me that’s enough. Yes, it took this sickness to realize that money, work mean nothing when you lose your health. From me to you reading this you need your family and friends to get thru all this. I hope my trip to the bottom facing death can be of help to anyone with questions on head and neck cancer.
5) What are you looking forward to most on race day? Support the people that supported me. THANK YOU!