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Prostate cancer survivor talks about early testing

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LAWTON, Okla_The month of November has been nicknamed "mo"vember. It's the one month a year when growing a moustache, no matter how burly and unattractive, is not only ok, but encouraged. Men let their moustaches grow freely to raise awareness for prostate cancer. The moustache is just a symbol and it's one of many ways that people can join in the fight against this disease.

Marion Lennox is an inspiration to many, he talks about the importance of early detection all over the country. It's become his mission to get as many men into see a doctor as possible. He says it's life saving.

Prostate cancer is the second deadliest form of cancer, just after lung cancer. In 2012 there were about 240,000 new cases. It affects millions of men each year. In August of 2006, Lennox found out that he was one of those statistics.

"I was rocking along, cutting grass, doing anything I wanted."

Prostate cancer is a silent killer and It often goes undetected.

"Cancer can happen and you don't even know it."

The only reason Lennox knew his body was changing, was because he regularly tested his prostate specific antigen or PSA.

"I knew there was something wrong with my body because my PSA kept going up."

He went to Oklahoma City for a biopsy. That's when he learned he had cancer. Lennox said there was no time to dwell on the situation or feel sorry for himself. He wanted to know everything there was to know about prostate cancer, so he spoke with his doctors.

"We talked about my options. Then I got some material and started reading."

He said he studied prostate cancer day in and day out during his treatment and recovery. Lennox chose a common treatment method, seeds. It's a quick procedure where doctors place radioactive seeds next to the tumor. Overtime, they kill the cancer, and lower the PSA. The procedure worked for Lennox and he's been cancer free for six years, with a PSA of zero point one.

"Early detection is the reason I'm a survivor. I went early, I kept my appointments. Since I came out of the military, I got my prostate checked twice a year."

Lennox said his battle with prostate cancer changed him, it shed light on a passion of his. Spreading the message of awareness.

"Prostate cancer has made me a better person. I tell people all the time, this is my passion. Prostate cancer. Hey, I go around, any time I see a man younger than me, 10 years, 20 years, I start talking to them about prostate cancer. This is what I do ma'am."

Lennox has personalized letters from his doctors thanking him for all he does to spread the message of awareness and early detection to men who have hesitations about seeing a doctor. Lennox said over and over again that the "machoness has got to go" he says that macho mentality is what often keeps men from making an appointment, one that could potentially save their life.

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