endured 22 months of ups and downs — doctor visits, surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation, new drugs that for some time had seemingly miraculous effects on his body — but took his final breath eight days before his 25th birthday.
Melanoma is the fastest growing skin cancer in the world, particularly among young people, and it’s also the deadliest.
Caress wanted more people to learn about it and become more aware of its devastating potential, which is why he founded Mela-KNOW-More prior to his death. The nonprofit is now known as the Andy Caress Melanoma Foundation
(ACMF), whose volunteers are dedicated to furthering his mission.
“My goal is that melanoma will never impact any person the way it has impacted me,” Caress said in 2010. “And I will achieve my goal by educating the world about how melanoma may be prevented and identified.”
To commemorate Caress’ life, the ACMF hosts an annual fundraiser, the Block the Sun Run
. Now in its sixth year, the 5k takes place in Caress’ hometown of Glendale.
All proceeds from the race are used to support Caress’ wish of increasing awareness of the cancer and supporting research to eliminate it. Last year, the ACMF raised $35,000 for the MD Anderson Cancer Center
in Texas, which is engaged in groundbreaking melanoma research.
The Block the Sun Run takes place at 5 p.m. May 14, with an after-party to follow.
• Pre-register by 6 p.m. Thursday for the Block the Sun Run, or register in-person Friday 12-7 p.m. or Saturday 2-4:30 p.m. at Bob Roncker's Running Spot
• Interested in volunteering at Saturday's 5k? If so, contact
• Can't make it out Saturday? Support
the ACMF by making a donation.