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Banded Together for a Cure | Derek’s Story

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A photo of Derek Lewis

“Derek seemed like the epitome of health. He had exercised, done everything right,” shared Mark Soliman, M.D. as he recalled Derek Lewis’s journey through cancer. After years of a living healthy and active, Derek began to see blood in his stool. At first he was unalarmed thinking that it was a one-time occurrence, but when the blood returned, his concern for his health grew.

Derek decided to get a colonoscopy and was shattered to hear that they found a malignant tumor in his colon. “I did not know what my next steps were for treatment, but in a moment of chaos there was a calmness that came in,” shared Derek. Derek has had a longstanding, positive relationship with AdventHealth so he reached out to a dear friend who connected him with Dr. Soliman.

Dr. Soliman was able to successfully remove the tumor and assess that the cancer was an early stage that did not require chemotherapy or radiation. “I had surgery, and now I am cancer free,” shared Derek.

Derek Lewis now serves on the Foundation’s Cancer Board actively seeking ways to give back to individuals facing a cancer diagnosis, “I went from being a go-getter to becoming a go-giver.”

You can band together with Derek and other cancer survivors by supporting cancer research at AdventHealth Cancer Institute when you wear the colors of cancer around your wrist. Purchase bands for $20 and wear them as a reminder that no one ever has to walk through a cancer diagnosis alone.

Go to to order your bands or learn more how you can support this community. Giving to cancer research is a simple but powerful way to align yourself with the shared hope that lives in ever cancer patients’ heart, that one day we will find a cure.

Banded Together for a Cure | Derek’s Story

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