Chadwick Boseman’s performance in “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” was terrific, and it earned his legacy another award recently, as he won outstanding actor in a motion picture at the NAACP Image Awards recently. His widow, Simone Ledward Boseman, accepted the award on his behalf, tearily, and delivered a compelling PSA for colon cancer screening.
We lost the brilliant actor last fall at the tragically young age of 43 after the Black Panther star battled colon cancer privately for several years. His wife said he was an “uncommon artist and an even more uncommon person.”
“But the manner in which we lost him is not uncommon at all, not in our community,” she said while accepting the award. And it’s a message that should hit home with all dads, as early detection is the absolute key to preventing colon cancer tragedies.
She also made the point that black people are 20 percent more likely to be diagnosed with colon cancer and 40 percent more likely to die from it. jh
“The age for routine screening has recently been lowered to 45, so if you are 45 years of age or older, please get screened. Don’t put it off any longer, please get screened,” she said, wiping away tears.
“This disease is beatable if you catch it in its early stages, so you don’t have any time to waste even if you have no family history and even if you think nothing is wrong.”
It was a poignant moment from the late actor’s wife, and it’s a message that was hopefully heard wide and far. It’s not the most comfortable thing to screen for, but you aren’t just doing it for yourself, you’re doing it for your families and for those who count on you every day.
“Please, you are so needed and you are so loved,” she said. “Please take your health into your own hands.”