SiMan, as reported over the weekend, announced that he too had pancreatic cancer and is going through comparable treatment. He found out his prognosis a few weeks after Mitch.
“When I told him on the phone that I had the same cancer he has, he broke down and cried because he knew what I was in for,” said SiMan who is 58.
Their mothers were first cousins and were very close, SiMan said. So SiMan and Mitch grew up together as children.
“He was more than a cousin to me,” said Mitch, who is 56. “He was a mentor. He was a protégé. I always looked up to him. We have similar energies.”
After 20 years doing weekend party shows for Kiss 104.1 and hosting Kiss’s Flashback Festivals, Mitch has been on Classix the past two years doing much the same thing.
“He loves music, loves entertaining, loves Atlanta and is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet,” said Tim Davies, Mitch’s boss at Radio One Atlanta. “The whole Radio One Atlanta family is praying for a quick recovery during his challenging times.”
The five-year survival prognosis for patients who have stage 4 pancreatic cancer that has spread to organs like the lungs, according to the American Cancer Society, is 3%.
The two cousins are planning a podcast to talk about the journey they are experiencing.
Kathy Jenkins, a former promotions director for both Radio One and Cox Radio created a GoFundMe page for SiMan, which has raised $9,475 as of Wednesday afternoon.
Mitch has a similar GoFundMe page, which has raised $10,700 to date.
“Gary would greatly appreciate your donation during this difficult time,” the GoFundMe page noted. “Cancer care is costly. It also affects income for Gary because of his physical condition. The financial, medical and prescription costs associated with cancer are overwhelming when trying to manage unexpected charges that health insurance does not cover.”