Former New Brunswick radio host's new book sheds light on cancer treatment
Dave Morrell is known for his voice and support of local sports in New Brunswick, but these days the former broadcaster is using his cancer diagnosis to connect with others.
Morell recently penned a book documenting his cancer journey and the experiences of his family members.
'Hit the Switch', a nod to his radio career, references advice he received early on that, no matter what's going on in life, when he walked into the studio and hit the on-air switch, he had to put those feelings behind him to be 100 per cent for the audience listening.
Nine of his family members contributed a chapter each, and its contents remained a secret from each other until the book was published.
“The chapters in the book are very heartfelt, it's a bit of a rollercoaster of emotion," says Morrell, who is battling stage four cancer.
"There's some tears in it, there's some laughter in it, but above all, there's hope in it and that's what it's all about. A cancer journey is not easy."
Morell says he couldn't find a lot of resources that spoke to him in the early days of his diagnosis, so he decided to write one.
The Chalmers Foundation and Morell saw an opportunity to work together and share his story with oncology patients at the local hospital.
"The more tools and resources we can make available to patients, the better it is. He had talked to the team, the oncologists and the team in oncology (to discuss) is this something that would help?” says Gilles Allain, executive director of The Chalmers Foundation.
“So, of course, it would, and they took it upon themselves to start writing it, piecing it together."
Funds from the sale of the book will go right back to the oncology ward at Fredericton’s Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital.
They will be made available to patients and their families at the cancer unit free of charge.
Morell is doing well despite his challenging diagnosis. Some days he feels like a seven.
After being asked multiple times a day 'How are you feeling?' Morrell came up with a solution.
“We have a whiteboard on our refrigerator and I wrote across the top 'how I'm feeling today' on a scale of one to 10 and I put a number on that board every morning," he says.
"Right now my condition is stable, I have been since I began in July of 2018."
Morrell is undergoing immunotherapy, a drug treatment that puts your own immune system into overdrive and teaches it to fight cancer.
His book, 'Hit the Switch' will officially launch via an online stream from the Fredericton Public Library on June 22.