Craig is taking on the challenge to tee-off with Cancer Council’s The Longest Day this December, to raise awareness and much-needed funds for the services that had become a lifeline for him and his family ever since he received his cancer diagnosis.
At 48 years old, loving husband and father of three, Craig received the unexpected and devastating news that what he thought was a pulled muscle, was in fact terminal bowel cancer which would see him live only for another two to three years.
First it was one spot on his liver, then spots, then more. Every phone call would leave his family in tears because every time it just got worse.
Since then, Craig and his family have been relying on the support of Cancer Council SA counsellors to get them through this overwhelming and difficult time.
“Right after the doctors told me the news, I met the sweetest Cancer Council SA Outreach Nurse who came up to me and said the right thing—she understood. She had all the information and could answer all my questions, and that’s when I first felt like there was support there,” Craig says.
“I had such great support from Cancer Council SA from that first day, there was no way I could ever feel alone.”
While the family have each been coping with Craig’s diagnosis in their own ways, he says that as a family unit, they couldn’t be any stronger than they are now. Craig is focused on living in the moment and spending quality time with his loved ones. One of the ways he does this is by playing golf with his oldest son Trent every week.
“You hit some good balls and some bad balls, but I don’t take it too seriously. For me, it’s about being social and spending quality time with the people I care about,” Craig says.
It was actually at a corporate golf day for The Longest Day 2022, that Craig first approached the Cancer Council SA team at their SunSmart marquee to express his gratitude for all the support he had received, inspired to find out more about how he could support the cause.
Since then, Craig has been a passionate supporter of Cancer Council SA sharing his story and volunteering his time as a Concierge at Greenhill Lodge, welcoming our regional guests who are travelling to Adelaide for life-saving cancer treatment.
Now this year, Craig and his son have gathered their mates to tee-off for The Longest Day, challenging themselves to take on a massive 72 holes of golf in one day this December to raise funds for Cancer Council SA’s vital services and programs that make such a difference in the lives of South Australians impacted by cancer.
Unfortunately, this is not Craig’s first experience with cancer… In 2010, Craig had a scab on his nose that never fully healed. He had put off going to the doctor for about 10 months until, thanks to his wife’s persistent reminders, he made an appointment.
The doctor immediately did a biopsy and found that it was skin cancer. Thankfully, they were able to cut the cancer out and now Craig just has a small scar on his nose.
Craig says that he loves spending time outdoors, but with his history of skin cancer, sun protection couldn’t be more important.
Skin cancer is Australia’s national cancer. 2 in 3 Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime and new research shows that golfers are of greater risk of skin cancer due to their extended exposure to UV radiation while playing golf.
“I played cricket when I was younger and we were spending hours out in the field. We were wearing caps, instead of the broad-brimmed hats, and I know we didn’t apply enough sunscreen. I hate to think of the days where I came out looking like a red lobster,” Craig says.
“Golf is no different. We’re out there for hours at a time, so wearing sun protection has never been more important. I am really trying to instil into my children how important it is to wear a hat, sunnies, long sleeves and sunscreen.”
Golfers are almost 2.5 times more likely to develop skin cancer in their lifetime than the general population. Protect you and your mates from the sun by slipping on sun protective clothing, slopping on SPF50 or higher sunscreen, slapping on a broad-brim hat, seeking shade and sliding on some wraparound sunglasses on the course this summer.
This year, The Longest Day is officially on Monday 11 December 2023, but you can tee-off with us any day from November through to January. Take on a massive 72 holes of golf in a single day, or 36 and 54 hole challenges to suit every golfer.
All while raising vital funds for life-saving cancer prevention, research and support services, like our Cancer Council 13 11 20 information and support line, that make a HOLE lot of difference in the lives of South Australian families impacted by cancer, like Craig’s.
Grab your mates and register for The Longest Day ultimate golf challenge.