Gene’s love for being active and the great outdoors was undeniable, but once he was diagnosed with kidney cancer he felt broken and scared that he would have to give it up. Gene navigated the currents of life on his paddleboard to reflect and escape a busy work schedule. He didn’t want to give that up.
Going into his back surgery Gene was uneasy about his paddleboarding future. His neurosurgeon told him, “I’ve got you, don’t worry.” To this day, Gene has never forgotten the little glimmer of hope his doctor gave him that he needed as a kick-start. He never forgot about the caring and professional staff that surrounded him during his treatment at Moffitt. Together, they got through it. This would later set a spark in Gene to do something for those experiencing a cancer battle.
“Certain people do things professionally for money, but these people do things for love and to help people and that’s obvious,” says Gene.
Inspiration to Others
Gene gives back now through his love of paddle boarding. His yearly event, Paddle Against Cancer raises awareness and donates to cancer research at Moffitt. Each year paddleboarders set out together to paddle local waterways here for one purpose; to give the glimmer of hope for those still fighting their own battle.