Nominate your guy for Buddy Check 'Man of the Month'

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It's new! Maybe your guy can be our Buddy Check "Man of the Month." If he's your hero during your fight with breast cancer, just email Jeannie Blaylock.

We're looking for a man who's super supportive of their Buddy Check woman working hard to beat breast cancer.

You can also nominate your guy if he's your faithful Buddy each month as we all remind each other to do Buddy Check 12.

The idea is to do self-exams and get our mammograms to catch breast cancer early.

Our Man of the Month for January 2014 is Rafael Castro-Leon.

Rafael, 64, is proud of his service in the U.S. Navy and he's a colon cancer survivor himself.

Rafael has been by his wife's side every step of her journey to beat breast cancer.

We've been following Rosa for more than a year since she told us she found her cancer doing Buddy Check 12.

Our hats are off to Rafael for being so involved that he also checked the lump. He said men should not be embarrassed or leave it up to their wives only.

Rafael said Rosa's breast lump felt like an uncooked bean. It was very hard, he said.

The two have been together more than 50 years. To celebrate their anniversary and their victory over cancer, they took a 12-day cruise.

It was "very romantic," they both say. They're grateful to be alive to enjoy each other.

Rafael credits Buddy Check 12 with saving his wife's life.

Rafael deserves "Man of the Month" not just for his undying support of Rosa's journey, but for his attitude about her choice to have a double mastectomy.

He said Rosa was worried about having her cancer come back, and so one night "she woke me up saying, 'I want to do both breasts.'"

He told her the "cosmetic" side was not important at all in comparison to her health.

Rafael also made sure he kept the entire process full of a little humor.

The doctor told him he could make some interesting choices when it came to the size of Rosa's breasts in reconstruction.

Rafael said the doctor told him he could go for "40 double-D." But Rafael chuckles and said he was happy with Rosa's size before she had her natural breasts removed. Her comfort, Rafael said, was top priority.

Rafael is quick to hug and kiss his sweetheart. It's a testimony to a long-lasting marriage, still alive and kickin' because Rosa did Buddy Check 12.

It's new! Maybe your guy can be our Buddy Check "Man of the Month." If he's your hero during your fight with breast cancer, simply email Jeannie Blaylock.

If you want a free Buddy Check 12 kit mailed to you or someone you love, just call Baptist at 904-202-CARE.


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