I’m laying in bed and trying hard to sleep, and I just can’t. My family has had a long week. My brain surgery because of melanoma this past Tuesday wasn’t on anyone’s bucket list, guaranteed. As is my norm sometimes when I can’t sleep, I scroll through posts from my melahomies, amazing folks who are going through…in some, way shape, or form…what I am. I depend on these folks. I need them like flowers need rain. I come across a post about Giada DeLaurentiis, and her brother’s death from melanoma. I think most of us are aware of his death, and are thrilled that Giada has spoken out in the fight against melanoma in her brother’s honor, doing PSAs like this one:
Then comes news I was unaware of…that Guy Fieri’s sister, passed away from melanoma as well. Wait…I literally just finished watching an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. And at the end of the show, Guy is sitting in that gorgeous red convertible…with a sunburn on his chest to match. Wait…WHAT? Now I’m REALLY upset. Sunburn is no way to honor a sister who has lost her life to this beast of a cancer. However, I don’t know when that episode was taped. To be fair, it could have been before her diagnosis and ultimate death.
Mr. Fieri had a new cookbook coming out in the Spring and wanted to change the dedication. Here’s how that went down:
“TravelFoodandDrink.com: How did everything go with the release of the book?
Guy Fieri: Well, the book was a very emotional thing for me. This tattoo that I have on my arms is about my little sister. My little sister passed away in February. It was heartbreaking. She had melanoma. She had cancer when she was a little kid so we battled it for years as a family and it was just the most devastating thing I had happen in my life.
It was very interesting because the book was finished, and the book has a lot. This was the book that I wrote saying, ‘this may be the last book that I do.’ Not that I think it will be — we have a big book deal that we are getting ready to launch right now — but I thought this may be the last book and I’m putting it all in this book.
Ironically enough, as the book is being written, my sister was losing the battle. We got to the end of the book and it was dedicated to my mom, my dad and my sister. I had already dedicated things to Lori and the boys, so I thought this would be great to do. Then my sister passed. The book was going to print and I called my publisher at Harper Collins, Cassie Jones. I said, ‘I need to change the dedication.’
She said, ‘We are so far down the road we can’t.’
I then said, ‘This is more important to me than anything. I’ll pay to have it changed. Let me send you a picture.’
So I sent her the drawing that I had to make that tattoo. ‘Namaste’ was something that my sister would say to me every day. ‘Namaste,’ which means the God in me. She was such a teacher of our family. She would tell us about organics and about recycling and I’d be like, ‘c’mon.’ but she would always be in my ear about it again and again. She would always be saying that as a message, so we put that as the dedication of the book.
It gave me the biggest sigh of relief because what it does for me — and it does for my parents and my nephew — is that my sister lives on forever. My sister lives on in the book shelves and in the homes, with the families of people forever. And that’s a weird thing that that’s what I needed to do, but it’s like climbing the highest mountain and scratching her name in the world. It’s incredibly cathartic.” Source: http://travelfoodanddrink.com/all-about-family-in-the-end-for-guy-fieri/
Honestly, I mean no disrespect to Mr. Fieri, here. I’m truly sorry for the loss of your sister. I think constantly about what it would be like to lose someone I loved…especially because of melanona…and it’s mind boggling. But that person that I loved sure wouldn’t live on “forever…on a book shelf.” I’d be speaking out, and raising awareness, and hoping to prevent someone else from going through the same suffering.
I beg you, Mr. Fieri. Do more. You have the power. People WILL listen to you. YOU can save lives.
In the meantime, here is some information for everyone to use to protect themselves from the sun, and hopefully from melanoma.
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