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  • Megann Horstead

Lemont woman inspired to support prostate cancer awareness

Lemont resident Debbie Trinco doesn’t think there is enough awareness surrounding prostate cancer, and she is taking action to promote the cause.

The cause hits close to home for Trinco, 59. Her husband, Darryl Trinco, also 59, has been receiving treatment for prostate cancer off and on since 2001, she said.

Debbie Trinco said cancer doesn’t affect just the person battling it. She emphasized the overall effect it has on spouses, family and friends as well.

“It’s not just an emotional and physical issue ... It definitely hurts couples, families and friends, too,” she said.

Back in 2001, the Trincos had been planning to vacation in Aruba when Darryl developed a cough. Finding that the cough would not go away, they canceled their trip and Darryl went to see his doctor for a checkup. In noting concerns, a prostate-specific antigen test revealed a spike in his PSA numbers.

Although screening for the disease typically does not begin until age 50, Darryl had developed prostate cancer at age 46.

The Trincos wanted to determine what steps to take after ending his first round of treatment in summer 2004.

At a get-together at the Trincos house, a friend of Debbie’s talked to her about the Support Educate Advocate Blue Prostate Chicago organization and its efforts to promote awareness. Within the same week, the Trincos turned to the Internet for more information.

Unlike breast cancer, “there’s never really a clear cut procedure for prostate cancer,” said Eve Swire, Public Relations Consultant for SEA Blue Prostate Chicago.

Because September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, Swire and the rest of SEA Blue Prostate Chicago are moving forward to celebrate awareness of the cause and its 10th annual Run & Walk on Sept. 14. Registration starts 8 a.m. and the run and walk follows at 9 a.m. in Chicago’s Lincoln Park, 1750 N. Clark St.

The Run & Walk is a family event offering educational sessions, free PSA blood testings, a free lunch, a band, tumblers, a bouncy house and more and is the only event promoting the cause’s awareness in Chicago, according to Swire.

Since getting involved with the run and walk eight years ago, the Trincos have organized one of the largest fundraising teams. Their team has 90 to 100-plus participants annually.

As part of a media blitz effort with SEA Blue, Debbie’s “famous pretzels” are making appearances across the Chicago area to promote the fight against prostate cancer. The pretzels are homemade at Debbie’s house and decorated blue for prostate awareness.

“It’s like this whole ALS/Lou Gehrig’s Ice Water Bucket challenge,” Debbie said. “Unless people hear about it, no one will know about it.”