In November 2012, Gerry Carlozzi at 56 years old was diagnosed with Stage IV Pancreatic Cancer. He approached his diagnosis the only way he knew how, with strength, optimism, and the will to survive. Due to the lack of options for early detection his cancer was too far along for surgical intervention. In fact, there were very few options providing good patient outcomes, so he prepared to enroll in a clinical trial. As his body fought this awful disease to prepare for treatment, he lost his battle a short 6 weeks later.
On Christmas Day, 2012 we lost a loving husband, dad, and friend at Jefferson University hospital in the early hours of the morning.
Nothing can take away from the tragedy of this day, the hole that will forever remain in our hearts, or his five granddaughters that he will never know. All we can do now is "Wage Hope" supporting the improvement in early detection methods, treatment options, and awareness in the hope that other families do not have to face a loss like ours.
On November 4, 2017 team Gerry Strong will participate in our 4th annual PurpleStride in support of this mission. We will walk/run in memory of the most honorable husband, dad, father-in-law, grandpa, and friend we have ever known.
Any donations in support of our cause are appreciated.
All are welcome to join our team!
Pancreatic Cancer Facts:
- In 2016, pancreatic cancer moved from the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death in the U.S. to the third, surpassing breast cancer
- It is estimated that in 2017, 53,670 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and 43,090 will die from the disease. Seventy-one percent of patients will die within the first year of diagnosis.
- Pancreatic cancer is the only major cancer with a five-year relative survival rate in the single digits, at just 9 percent.
- While overall cancer incidence and death rates are declining, the incidence and death rates for pancreatic cancer are increasing. Pancreatic cancer is projected to move past colorectal cancer to become the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States around 2020.
- At this time, there are no proven biomarkers, or clues detectable in the blood or other bodily fluids, that could indicate the presence of a pancreatic tumor.
- While surgery (often the Whipple procedure) offers the best chance for survival, fewer than 20% of pancreatic cancer cases are diagnosed early enough for surgical invention. Even with surgery, the disease recurs in approximately 80% of these patients, who die within five years of recurrence.
- A 2016 study identified four subtypes of pancreatic cancer based on molecular changes allowing researchers to now focus on determining which treatments are best aligned with these patients characteristics.
- We have made important progress in understanding pancreatic cancer, but the continued low survival rates dictate an urgentneed to create more focus on this disease.