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More than 2,600 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year

Posted at 7:22 AM, Nov 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-06 09:22:53-04

HURT, Va. - Frank Dalton calls it a gift.

“When I first found out I had it, I didn't know men could get it,” Dalton told WTKR-TV. “God looked after me and made sure I survived so I can tell other men about it.”

What he calls a “gift” is what he found in 2016 during a fishing tournament.

“A bunch of us were going to go out to eat, I took a shower, and I noticed a spot directly under my nipple that was hard,” he said. “It was like a rock.”

After weeks of tests and doctor visits, he got the news on December 7, 2016. He had been diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer.

“When my wife and I sat down with the oncologist, he told me I was 6 months away from leaving this place. He said, if I had waited 6 months, there wouldn't have been anything he could've done for me,” Dalton said. “I went out, got in my truck and I sat there and cried for about 5 minutes. Then, I was like, ‘Okay, you got that out of your system. Now let's go.”

Dalton is one of about 2,600 men in the US who are diagnosed with breast cancer every year. More than 500 of them will die.

Every year, the American Cancer Society funds millions of dollars of research into finding treatments and cures for breast cancer in men and women.

That’s why the men of Denver7 are again taking part in No Shave Colorado. During the month of November, they’re growing out their beards in hopes of starting conversations about the importance of getting cancer screenings and encouraging people to donate to the cause. All of the money raised through No Shave Colorado helps researchers and cancer patients here in our state.

After more than a year of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation – Dalton has been cancer free since 2018. Now he is speaking up for men to check themselves and advocating for more breast cancer resources for men.

“When I'm watching TV, my wife can tell you the same thing. A commercial will come on about breast cancer, or something, and it's all women. It's never men,” Dalton said. “The more I can get the word out, the more likely it is some man will see that it's okay if you have breast cancer. It's okay to talk about it. It's nothing to be embarrassed about.”

Frank Dalton’s story was originally told by reporter Zak Dahlheimer of the Scripps station WTKR.  Dahlheimer, a cancer survivor himself, is also growing a beard for No Shave November/Movember.