Lexington cancer survivor putting his diagnosis in the rearview mirror

Lexington cancer survivor putting his diagnosis in the rearview mirror
Published: Jun. 29, 2022 at 4:58 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - June is Cancer Survivor’s Month, when we celebrate those who are in the fight right now or who have battled the disease.

As we celebrate those who give us so much hope, we wanted to introduce you to one Lexington man living life to the fullest after his diagnosis and how that in itself is a link to hope to others on their cancer journey.

Spend just a little bit of time with 58-year-old Wendell Meneese and you quickly learn where his heart is-- on the open road.

The proud veteran spends a lot of time on his bike, a place he loves. Wendell though, has another love, his wife April, who has been by his side for 30 years.

She isn’t shy in describing her riding partner for life.

“Very caring, very loving, very respectful, people respect him,” April said.

Wendell and his wife have covered a lot of open road together, but perhaps their toughest journey is one you won’t find on a map.

“I was actually diagnosed in 2019, June of 2019,” Wendell said.

A routine physical found Wendell had a rising PSA level and he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. According to the CDC, prostate cancer is the second-most common cancer in men, and Black men are at increased risk of developing it.

With no family history, Wendell admitted prostate cancer wasn’t on his radar.

“When I hit that 4.0 mark was when myself and my wife, we became concerned and started trying to find out as much information as possible,” Wendell said.

He looked at the options and decided on several rounds of radiation. During his journey, he found he wasn’t alone in his diagnosis.

“After finding out I had prostate cancer I also found out that several of my friends either had gone through it or even during the time I was going through it also found out themselves,” Wendell said.

A support system can be key, and Wendell found healing in sharing not for himself, but letting other men know what to expect.

“I think that part, the part about knowing you are not going through this by yourself is real important,” Wendell said.

Wendell was able to get the screenings he needed, but his wife, who works at Kentucky CancerLink, knows that’s not always the case.

She said to reach out to KCL and let them be your link to hope.

“I love my job, because of the fact we can help people,” April said.

Survivors like Wendell are meant to be celebrated, and he’s back to riding, getting checkups and putting prostate cancer in the rearview mirror.

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