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Man stricken with cancer 10 times considers himself blessed

Posted - Jul. 8, 2012 at 10:03 a.m.



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Travis Hess knows a thing or two about cancer. His father died from the disease when he was 49. When Travis was 21, he was diagnosed with colon cancer. After battling it, he was diagnosed with cancer nine other times. Still, he pushes on with faith that God has a reason for afflicting him. In fact, Travis says he believes that he is blessed to have such a "visual" trial. People know that he is sick, and everyone rallies to support him and his family.

Over the span of the 20 years that Travis has battled cancer, three of his five children have also developed the disease at young ages. Doctors say they are carries of the Li-Fraumeni syndrome, making them more susceptible to cancer. Now that the Hess family knows that, they have worked with fertility doctors to ensure that the gene is not passed on.

Unfortunately, this knowledge came after Travis's 3-year-old daughter Alexis was diagnosed. She lost her life to a rare childhood cancer.

In honor of her, Travis started the Hess Cancer Foundation. The foundation helps to provide money for families who lose a child to cancer and who cannot afford to pay for a funeral.

Travis raises the money by competing in triathlons. Although he is still battling cancer, he continues to race and hopes to help even more families nationwide.

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