John Mann and Forward Magazine

An unexpected journey through colorectal cancer delivered some
equally unexpected gifts for the actor, singer and songwriter
On stage, he is lithe, muscular and full of life. But
John Mann, the accomplished actor and lead
singer/songwriter of the Canadian folk rock band
Spirit of the West, quickly softens as he talks
about being diagnosed with colon cancer five
years ago.
As John tells it from the quiet confines of his eclectic character
home in East Vancouver, he was rehearsing for Les Misérables
at Vancouver’s Arts Club Theatre in the spring of 2009 when he
suddenly started experiencing painful abdominal cramping.
Most colorectal cancer (94 per cent of new cases) is diagnosed
in people over age 50, and John, then 47, was just on the edge of
that milestone. And, while diet and lifestyle are among the most
significant risk factors for colorectal cancer, John had lived a
healthy, clean, fit life. Still, symptoms of abdominal pain prompted
his family doctor to send him for a colonoscopy. The diagnosis: an
early-stage, slow-growing tumour in his lower intestine.

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