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Nassau County Legislature

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May 1, 2013

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Legislator Walker Declares May as “Melanoma Awareness Month”

Nassau Legislator Rose Marie Walker, and fellow Legislators Joseph Belesi, Denise Ford, Michael Venditto and Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves, along with County Executive Ed Mangano and the Colette Coyne Melanoma Awareness Campaign (CCMAC), announced that May is “Melanoma Awareness Month” in Nassau County.

Skin cancer and Melanoma is the fastest growing cancer in America but can be prevented or cured through early diagnosis. Statistics from 2012 show that one-in-five will get some form of skin cancer.Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer and has a lifetime risk of 1 in 50. By comparison, in 1935, the disease struck only 1 in 1,500. Few people realize that Melanoma is the most common form of cancer in young adults 20 – 35 years old and second most common among 15-29 years old. Statistics indicate there will be more than 76,250 new cases of Melanoma in the United States and more than 9,180 people who will die of this disease, which translates into one death from Melanoma every hour of every day.

“As both a parent and grandparent, I think it is important to educate the younger generations about the dangers of Melanoma,” said Legislator Walker.  “Adults should be vigilant about time that they and their children spend outdoors in daylight hours. We tend to forget that even the cloudiest day can have high levels of dangerous UV rays.”

Mrs. Coyne of CCMAC urged the importance of prevention and tanning bed safety.  The Colette Coyne Melanoma Awareness Campaign was formed in 1998 after Mrs. Coyne’s thirty-year old daughter died from skin cancer.  The foundation’s mission is to raise public awareness about skin cancer/Melanoma, while changing behavior towards excessive sun exposure.

Pictured (l-r, back row): Legislator Michael Venditto; Legislator Joe Belesi; Legislator Denise Ford; Dr. Joseph Onorato of All Island Dermatology. (L-r, front row): NCPD Officer and Melanoma Survivor Sharon Galvin; Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves; Mrs. Coyne; County Executive Ed Mangano; Legislator Rose Walker; Legislator Robert Troiano and Nassau County Health Commissioner Dr. Lawrence Eisenstein.