My name is Josh King and I have been at WSOC/WAXN TV for over 10 years. I decided to participate in this year’s Avon Walk for Breast Cancer for multiple reasons.
A dear friend of mine, a woman named Von, is a survivor. We worked on many projects together here at WSOC, and she was the Executive Producer for the project that won me my first Emmy. I always loved working with her because her skills and professionalism were top-notch!
As a member of the National Guard, I had to leave my job and spend some time in Iraq. Sadly, when I returned I learned that while I was gone Von had been fighting her own war -- a war with cancer. After watching her go through her treatment with such courage and grace, I decided that the least I could do was give some of my time to help find a cure. I have learned from Von that once breast cancer begins it is something you will always have to live with. My heart goes out to her and her family.
Another friend of mine, Kathy, has been battling cancer for several years. Her notes to everyone are filled with joy, hope and optimism. If only we could be like that all of the time. I haven’t seen her face-to-face in years, but her courage (and dimples) bring a smile to my face every time I think of her.
Along with these two friends, cancer has deeply affected my family. My grandfather died of lung cancer in 2001, and then in 2005 we lost my father to cancer. My Aunt Susan is a survivor who refused to let cancer slow her down. If you have a loved one that has had to go through the ups and downs of cancer treatment you know that you go through it right along with them.
My dad was always bigger, faster, and smarter. I looked up to him like no other man. Before being diagnosed, he raised all of us kids to face fear head-on, to not let it dictate our lives, to stand up for what is right. In the end he showed us what he was talking about. Day by day I watched his physical strength go, but never his mental will to survive. He cracked jokes and made us all smile right up to the end.
A disease like this robs us all of our most precious assets. You don’t need to have lost someone to see the impact it has on this world. As we casually cruise through our day to day lives, some people are fighting for every one they have left. When I learned that the Charlotte Avon Walk is almost 40 miles long, I thought wow, that is a long way to go … but really it is trivial compared to the trips people with cancer have had to endure. Just like my Dad showed me, maybe I can show my son that a little hard work for a good cause isn’t a bad thing.
When I heard about Team 9/64 and their commitment to the Charlotte Avon Walk, I had to get involved. I’m not very good at raising money but I’ll make it happen. I don’t walk 20 miles a day, but for this I will. I encourage everyone to step outside of their comfort zone and challenge themselves for a good cause. If you can’t, please consider giving a donation and I will do the sweating. See you all this fall! Cheers!