“ Get informed and keep learning about the diagnosis, treatment options, and how to make the most out of the worst. The effects of cancer, both mentally and physically, may never subside, but it’s how you learn to handle it and live your best life.
Kenny Kane is a mAss Kicking “ginger”! He co-founded Stupid Cancer and is currently the Executive Vice-President, Mission. He travels a lot to promote young adult cancer survivor resources. We were very lucky to catch him during the holidays to ask him a few questions.
mK: Hi Kenny! Thanks for doing this! What is your relationship to tumors/cancer?
KK: My dad was diagnosed in 2005 at age 50 with testicular cancer. I was 17 and a senior in high school.
mK: What organizations are you involved with?
KK: I work full-time for Stupid Cancer, and work with many different types of non-profit organizations. I work with the following organizations on a regular basis: mAss Kickers, First Descents, Imerman Angels, Testicular Cancer Foundation, Testicular Cancer Society, Keep-A-Breast, National Coalition of Oncology Nurse Navigators, along with many members of Critical Mass/YAA.
mK: You sure are one busy guy! What motivates you?
KK: My initial interest in volunteering for Stupid Cancer (formerly I’m Too Young For This! Cancer Foundation) stemmed from my fathers diagnosis. I gained momentum from making connections with the thousands of survivors I’ve met along the way, as well as their caregivers and those affected by young adult cancer. It’s a highly rewarding field to be in, and I enjoy being part of the cause.
mK: Who is your personal hero or are your heroes?
KK: I think I will lose points here if I don’t tell you that survivors are my heroes! Seriously, though…they are.
mK: HAHAHA! What would you say is the most interesting thing you’ve done?
KK: I received a random e-mail in fall 2012 inviting someone from SC to a round table discussion in London about Breast Cancer awareness in Europe. I didn’t know if the email was legitimate, nor did I know much about London. I hopped on a redeye from Newark to Heathrow and found myself navigating the tube to my destination. I connected with survivors and advocates, as well as non-cancer-related friends I had over there. It was an amazing trip.
mK: Cool! Based on what you’ve observed, what is the toughest challenge a survivor faces?
KK: Hands down: access to care. I’ve done two cross-country road trips leading into the OMG! Summit in Las Vegas. Along the route, we stop in 12 cities. It’s eye-opening to see the disparities from one night to the next. Being a New York Metro area native, I think that is one thing we take for granted.
mK: Right! Changing gears… What is your guilty pleasure?
KK: I think traveling and getting to see new places on work related trips is a guilty pleasure. Someone said something about traveling being more educational than sitting in a classroom. Whoever it was, they were right.
mK: You do a lot of traveling. Where is the best place to visit?
KK: I love traveling to San Diego, Austin, and Nashville. Not always in that order, but those are my top 3 US cities for sure.
mK: San Diego is “America’s Finest City”… NO BIAS HERE! What do you like to do in your spare time?
KK: I’ve had a motorcycle for 6 years, and love every second I get to spend on it. I’ve met some really interesting people from all walks of life who ride, which is always an added benefit.
mK: Are you a “cool rider“? j/k… What are you up to now?
KK: I just turned 27, which is exciting, I suppose. I have a Bachelor Degree in Communications, and constantly have this nagging feeling that at some point I should go back to school for a real degree. (Just kidding Comm. majors!)
mK: Any advice for people or loved ones that get daunting diagnoses?
KK: I would say to get informed and keep learning about the diagnosis, treatment options, and how to make the most out of the worst. The effects of cancer, both mentally and physically, may never subside, but it’s how you learn to handle it and live your best life.
mK: Tell us something about yourself that people probably didn’t know… anything.
KK: I’m a failed boy scout.
mK: Wow! Any parting words for all the mAss Kickers?
KK: Stay strong and kick some mAss.
Kenny Kane: World traveler, cross country road tripper, red-headed biker dude, boy scout reject, and powerful young adult survivor advocate! If you are a young adult survivor or know one, Check out the resources on Stupid Cancer! We are always excited to see what Stupid Cancer does next!