Local Cancer-Survivor Beats the Odds, Fights Back

“You don’t need to sit around and wait for a cure ? you need to be a part of the cure.” That’s what Tyghe Nielsen’s brother told him after more than two years of battling stage four colorectal cancer. Those words of inspiration from one brother to another were the humble beginnings of the Drown Out Cancer Foundation.

Tyghe Nielsen is a life-long swimmer who capped off his competitive career as a member of the KU men’s swim team. A strong and resilient man, Tyghe received the unexpected shock of his life just a few days before his thirty-third birthday. He was diagnosed with cancer, and the odds of survival past the five-year mark were a disheartening 8%.

“The news hit me really hard for a couple days. But after that, all I could think about was how I could get to that 8%,” said Tyghe. With the odds against him, he set out to do more than just survive. With the help of his dedicated family and friends, Tyghe began the Drown Out Cancer Foundation with the goal of raising awareness and funds for cancer research. The result of their efforts is the inaugural Drown Out Cancer Swim-A-Thon, taking place at the Lawrence Indoor Aquatic Center on Saturday, April 27th, 2013. Participants will raise money for cancer research and treatment, and all proceeds will go to the University of Kansas Cancer Center as well as the Kanzius Foundation.

Check out this promotional video for the event, created by the Kansas City photographer Todd Davidson.

Registration for this all-ages event will begin at 9:00 am, and the Swim-A-Thon will be held from 10:00am-5:00pm. The finale of this all-day fundraiser will take place at Wil Jenny’s with live and silent auctions, an award ceremony for swimmers, and live music. The entire Greater Kansas City and Topeka communities are invited to participate in this event, but no participants are required to swim. For more information about the Swim-A-Thon, visit www.DrownOutCancer.com.

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