VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Taking that trip to the doctor can be nerve wracking, especially when you suspect something isn’t right.
A few weeks ago, WAVY director Steven Crocker had to make that trip, concerned about a growth in his left testicle.
“It seemed like it was getting bigger and bigger, slowly, very slowly,” said Crocker.
After a trip to his primary care physician, and a urologist, Steven had an ultrasound and got news he was hoping he wouldn’t hear.
“He said yeah it’s definitely a tumor, it’s basically the entire inside of the left testicle and were going to have to remove it,” Crocker said.
Without almost any time to process the news, Steven went into surgery the very next day.
He not only learned it was testicular cancer, but the cancer spread to a lymph node in his back.
“I think I’m still numb to it already.”
Steven says while cancer was a surprise to him, the lump he found wasn’t.
He actually noticed it two and a half years ago.
“I was too scared, I didn’t want to know the worst case scenario,” Crocker said.
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Medical oncologist Mark Fleming says testicular cancer affects young men more often than we think.
“The good news is testicular cancer, even if it has spread, is something that’s usually curable,” Fleming said.
Crocker found out he needs chemo and that the treatments would make him lose his hair.
“I wanted to be ahead of the chemo and wanted to make losing my hair my decision,” he said.
Steven’s the type of guy who always turns something negative in his life into a positive for others. So he reached out to his hero and action sports legend Travis Pastrana.
“And said ‘hey, if I reach a certain fundraising amount for the testicular awareness foundation will you shave my head?'”
Steven met his goal within 35 minutes.
So a few days later, documented in a Facebook Live, Pastrana and fellow action sports star Phil Smage shaved Steven’s head.
“They took a really scary thing in my life and made it not so scary,” he said.
He says the goal from here is to spread awareness and hope that his story can encourage others to get checked.
Steven is continuing to raise money for the Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation. If you would like to follow his journey or donate to the cause, click here.
As Steven was looking into fundraisers, he came across Kim Jones, the founder and CEO of the Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation.
He says she had just set up a partnership with a company called Legacy, an in-home sperm banking company.
He says he was sent a kit and was also provided with a free year of preservation.
If you would like to learn more about testicular cancer: https://www.testicularcancerawarenessfoundation.org/.