Bob Ceragno is a colon cancer survivor who has been teaming up with the North Bergen Police Department and other Hudson County first responders for the past four years to raise funds during No Shave November.
During No Shave November, police officers throughout the country do not shave for the whole month to demonstrate their participation in raising awareness in their communities about colon cancer prevention.
” … Most people who get cancer lose their hair … by having a beard during the month, it’s showing people that you are healthy. It’s making the community aware that getting a colonoscopy for a colorectal cancer screening is not a big deal and it is something that is overlooked and I’m a prime example of that,” said Ceragno.
Multiple North Bergen, as well as Guttenberg and West New York, police officers waited their turn to have their beards buzzed off by the proprietors of Jagged Edge Spa & Salon: Ed Barry and Renee Diaz.
Ceragno, the proprietor of Eye Contact Vision Center at 7733 Bergenline Ave., has fundraised just above $50,000 since 2016 and has dispersed the funds to cancer charities such as Fight Colorectal Cancer.
He received another big check today as the West New York Policemen’s Benevolent Association presented him with one worth $4,500.
Since he was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2015, it hasn’t been an easy personal journey for Ceragno.
During that time he still had to go to work to run his business while undergoing treatment.
His symptoms were so severe that he had no choice but to see his general practitioner immediately, followed by visits to a gastroenterologist and then ultimately have a surgical procedure.
“If I didnâ€™t have the symptoms I had, who knows what today, if I would be here. Going through chemotherapy and radiation, and then coming to work and running a business, not easy, but I had a great supporter in my wife, and the community and the women working here who have helped me quite a bit,” said Ceragno.
Based on his own personal experience as a cancer survivor, Ceragno said that it was important for the community to get regularly screened, especially among people age 45 and under, because fast food diets have been standard fare throughout their lives.
“Itâ€™s about knowing your body. If you feel something going on, talk to your doctor about getting screened, about a colonoscopy. A lot of people arenâ€™t familiar with having a colonoscopy or endoscopy. If you have a colonoscopy and they take out a cancerous polyp, that might be the end of your treatment. For me, it wasnâ€™t, but it could be the end of your treatment,” Ceragno said.