(BVI NEWS) – After losing his wife and the mother of his three sons to breast cancer, Alec Bunbury aims to raise awareness and spread a simple message – abandon the fear of being diagnosed, and get tested.
Bunbury is the widowed husband of the former magistrate, Charmaine Rosan-Bunbury who died in a United Kingdom (UK) hospital one year after being diagnosed with breast cancer.
He said fear of the ‘dreadful diagnosis’ was a major contributor to his wife losing her life to the disease.
“She was acquainted with her body and she felt some abnormalities which were concerning to her and she took measures to address the issue. But, somewhere in between fear and denial, I believe, kind of hampered her in terms of being more aggressive on the issue,” Bunbury told BVI News following a candlelight vigil for his wife at the weekend.
“It is important that every female is acquainted with their body and should not be afraid to have a test done,” the mourning husband said.
Before his wife’s death, Rosan-Bunbury was active in her private law practice in the territory.
She spent almost two months at two medical facilities in the UK before losing her fight with cancer late last year. Her body is still in the UK.
The purpose of the vigil was two-fold – remembering Rosan-Bunbury and raising funds for the BVI Cancer Society and the Sensus Health Club’s free mammogram programme.
Attendees were asked to pay an entrance fee of $25 at Saturday’s event.
The activities included a silent walk along the beach with candles and balloons, followed by a survivor story and remarks by President of the BVI Cancer Society, Gloria Fahie.
It started to rain midway through the President’s remarks so the event ended prematurely.
Event organizer and sister of deceased, Cindy Rosan-Jones was pleased with the turnout despite the inclement weather.
“I think we got a good turnout,” she said of the gathering that consisted of mostly friends and family.
“I think the weather held back the crowd a little bit but we appreciate everybody that turned out,” she added.
The ‘Light up the Night’ candlelight vigil is expected to be held annually to raise awareness of cancer.