In 1957, esophageal cancer claimed the life of acting legend, Humphrey Bogart. Bogart had just turned 57-years-old and weighed 80 pounds when he died. When he passed, the iconic film star left behind an 8-year-old son, Stephen Bogart.
In an effort to prevent other families from losing parents and other loved ones to the disease, Stephen Bogart has partnered with the Esophageal Cancer Action Network (ECAN) to share a life-saving message.
“We know that more and more lives are lost to this dreadful disease every year,” Bogart said. “But those lives could be saved with better public awareness and more early detection.” ~ ECAN
Bogart filmed a series of public service announcements at Maryland Public Television to encourage screening and raise awareness about the link between heartburn and esophageal cancer, one of the fastest increasing and deadliest cancers in the country.
One of those spots, “Heartburn Can Cause Cancer,” is debuting at the Thousand Oaks Muvico 14 in Thousand Oaks, Calif.
Through April 2014, the theater will air the PSA prior to every movie showing on all 14 screens.
“Humphrey Bogart was a film icon and Stephen Bogart now hosts a Florida TV show on the movies, so it’s especially fitting that the PSA has debuted on the silver screen,” said ECAN President and CEO Mindy Mintz Mordecai, who founded the national non-profit organization after losing her husband to esophageal cancer in 2008.
“Through this effort, nearly two million individuals who may be at risk for this silent killer will be able to get the message that heartburn can cause cancer,” Mordecai added.
Esophageal cancer facts, according to ECAN:
- One American dies of esophageal cancer every 36 minutes.
- Diagnoses of the disease are up more than up more than 400 percent in the past 20 years.
- The type of Esophageal Cancer increasing so rapidly in the United States is usually caused by heartburn.
The 10-second PSA and two others created for GERD Awareness Week in November and Esophageal Cancer Awareness Month in April are available for airing by theaters and TV stations/networks nationwide. Audio versions for radio also are available.
For additional information, visit the ECAN website or call 410-358-ECAN .
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