Jayhawks Rally for Pink Vail
On February 4, 2015, Daniel Elsbury was informed by his doctor that he had Stage 2/early Stage 3 colorectal cancer. Daniel had recently moved to Eagle County with old friends, ready to start “a new chapter in life.” “I never thought my life would change so much in one moment,” says Daniel. “No 31-year-old wants to get news like that.”
Daniel went through 5 ½ weeks of radiation and chemotherapy at Shaw Regional Cancer Center in Edwards. Eight weeks later, he had surgery in Denver. While his oncology team was able to successfully remove the cancerous tumor, he spent the following two months in and out of the hospital with a variety of infections that caused pain, frustration and fear.
As soon as he could, Daniel dove into his recovery taking advantage of Shaw’s “Spirit of Survival” program, which includes customized fitness training, nutrition counseling, emotional support and more. Funded by Pink Vail, the program is provided at no cost to all Shaw patients. “The Spirit of Survival program is phenomenal,” he said. “I take advantage of it every day, as much as I can. I love coming to Shaw and being able to relate to people who get what I’m going through.”
On April 2, 2016, Daniel might be the only one wearing blue under his Pink Vail costume. A graduate of the University of Kansas, Daniel is a huge Jayhawks fan. He has even named his team Rock Chalk PinkHawk in reference to his alma mater’s famous chant, and to encourage fellow Jayhawks to join or support his ski day. Daniel’s goal is to recruit close to 100 people to join his team and he wants to personally raise $5,000-$6,000 for the programs that helped make such a big difference in his life.
Daniel refers to this last year of his life as a journey. He says, “What I’m looking forward to most about Pink Vail is to see everyone come out and support one another. When you ride the gondola to the top and you see all the pink, you hear the music, you see all those people—it really does hit home. Pink Vail is the best way for someone to show his or her support of people going through the worst disease in the world.”
To register, donate or volunteer for Pink Vail on Saturday, April 2, 2016, visit www.pinkvail.com.