Michael Charles has been entertaining Canada’s largest city for decades now. Most people remember his epic parties starring big names like Michael Jordan and world renowned comic Russell Peters. Michael has also had a hand in bringing some of the funniest and most successful stage plays Toronto has ever seen (Diary of a Black Man, Deranged starring Robin Givens). He’s one of the busiest and hardest working men in the entertainment industry.
But today, there are no frantic phone calls; no back and forth making sure that the star of the show has arrived safely and has everything they want; no down to the wire contract negotiations. Today there is booking the next doctor’s appointment and hoping for a successful surgery; today there is reflection, and today there is a will stronger than ever to survive.
Michael Charles has a rare form of stomach cancer, called Gist. There is no cure, but there is treatment for the pain and an operation to reduce the many tumours in his stomach. “This has been a real wake up call for me. It’s made me understand that we are not in control. I don’t smoke or drink or do drugs. I play sports and go to the gym four times a week. But still this happened to me, without any warning or symptoms. I was in total shock,” says Michael.
Michael walked into the ER back in October thinking he had a bad stomach virus. They told him right away it was cancer. But doctors had no idea what kind of cancer it was. “It was really frustrating because I was literally watching my body deteriorate very rapidly and I could not receive any treatment because they could not pinpoint this rare form of cancer, called Gist. My own family doctor had never even heard of it.”
Three months went by without any treatment until doctors finally diagnosed Michael with Gist Cancer. He’s now taking medications to reduce the tumours in his stomach and doctors hope to operate on him soon to remove all of them.
In the meantime, Michael is left with expensive prescriptions for these medications. OHIP does not cover out of hospital medications in this case; costing thousands of dollars per month. Michael has a young family that is relying on him. “My kids are what I think about the most when I wake up every morning. I have to be here on this earth for them. I accept now I have this cancer, and it’s something that I have to beat.”
Along with a group of concerned friends, promoters and his family, you can help raise the much-needed money to help with Michael’s medical costs and special needs. Proceeds will also go to an education fund for his children. Please join us on Sunday January 20th for The Michael Charles Community Fundraiser at 6 Degrees. There will be raffles, giveaways and exciting performances from Ray Robinson, Marc Trinidad, Kollette East, Trish, Al St. Louis, Jay Martin, Dwayne Morgan, Stiletto and many more.
“It’s already lifted my spirits so much, just knowing that I have so many people who want to see me well. My heart is full.”
Michael Charles is available for interviews upon request.
For more info on Gist Cancer:
Please click here to go to the event website.
Click here http://fnd.us/c/4Pcmc
The Michael Charles Community Fundraiser
Sunday January 20th
6 Degrees Event Centre
2335 Yonge Street, Toronto
Doors Open 4pm – 10pm
Show at 5pm