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Don Boyd | all galleries >> Places Photo Galleries >> St. Petersburg Images Gallery > 1953 - Don Boyd on Pass-a-Grille Beach, St. Petersburg
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FEB-1953 John M. Boyd

1953 - Don Boyd on Pass-a-Grille Beach, St. Petersburg

Pass-a-Grille Beach, St. Petersburg, Florida

I was 5 years old at the time and I probably got a lifetime's worth of sun damage living in St. Petersburg prior to moving back to Miami. I was really tan back then and through my teen years and that sun damage combined with getting burned while spring snow skiing in Colorado several times has led me to come down with squamous cell skin cancer five times. My latest episode involved a cyst under my right sideburn area that was attached to my Parotid gland and I had a seven-hour operation on August 21, 2012, at the University of Miami Hospital. The Sylvester Cancer Center surgeon removed the cyst, the Parotid gland, part of my Thyroid gland, and numerous lymph cells and nerves. Fortunately only the cyst contained cancer cells but I still received radiation treatments for thirty days to make sure the cancer doesn't come back. My first year anniversary PET scan in November 2013 revealed no presence of cancer so four more years to go and I should be cancer-free. I strongly urge folks to use strong sun block, stay in the shade of an umbrella and do the same for your kids and grandkids. Failure to do so will greatly increase the odds of coming down with skin cancer and having to go through surgical operations and treatments.

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