Documentary chronicles fight against prostate cancer - FOX 35 News Orlando

FOX Medical Team

Documentary chronicles fight against prostate cancer

Posted: Updated:

An email out of the blue from one fraternity brother to hundreds of others changed Reggie Hicks' life.

Two weeks before he sent that email in January of 2007, Ralph Franklin was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer, and given about a 15 percent chance of survival.

Ralph's email was so honest and so frank that Hicks was drawn in, convinced people all over the country need to hear what Ralph Franklin had to say.

After almost 30 years in public broadcasting, Hicks, WCLK FM's director of development knows a good story when he hears one.

When he got this email from a fellow Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity brother he'd never met, it was so honest that Reggie knew there was something there.

The email was written by Ralph Franklin who'd just been diagnosed with prostate cancer.
 
"I just felt like this was a story that needed to be told, that I was so moved by his e-mail," said Hicks.
 
So Reggie - who'd never made a documentary before - asked Ralph if he'd be willing to share his story,   
 
"He said, 'Ralph, what I'm talking about is going to change your life'. I said, 'Reggie, my life has been changed already,'" said Franklin.

The documentary, "If You Are My Brothers," follows Ralph through his treatments and producing it taught Reggie a lot about perseverance and prostate cancer.
 
"It affects a lot of men, a lot of African-American men. I also learned thought that it doesn't have to be a death sentence," said Hicks.

Reggie was getting his own PSA level checks and a couple of times they'd been a little elevated, which can be a warning sign of prostate problems.

"I thought, 'wow, this will be great for the documentary. Here's the producer. I'll get checked. I wasn't that worried because my PSA wasn't that high, I didn't have any symptoms at all," Hicks said.

But Reggie's storyline suddenly changed as he and his wife learned that he, too, had prostate cancer.
   
"That is the most ironic part of this documentary, it is, it is it's fascinating," Franklin said. "When he found out it's like, 'What!'"

Almost overnight, Ralph went from being Reggie's documentary subject to his guide, coaching him through the treatment.

"Because when you have gone through it, you can tell other men specifically, 'this is going to happen and this is going to happen and this is going to happen,'" Franklin said.

Almost two years after his diagnosis, Reggie Hicks is cancer free and the documentary of how Ralph's story became his story is almost finished. He is hoping to have the documentary finished by September.

He'll be distributing in through churches and community groups.

Ralph is still in treatment and is participating in a clinical trial at the Cleveland Clinic. He says he feels blessed to be here today.

  • More Health NewsMore>>

  • Educators test system that allows non-verbal autistic student to 'talk'

    Educators test system that allows non-verbal autistic student to 'talk'

    Friday, August 22 2014 6:05 PM EDT2014-08-22 22:05:02 GMT
    An autistic boy who has never been able to talk can now speak his mind by typing. The FOX Medical Team's Beth Galvin shows us why his school system is now putting this method to the test.
    An autistic boy who has never been able to talk can now speak his mind by typing. The FOX Medical Team's Beth Galvin shows us why his school system is now putting this method to the test.
  • Is the discharge of two American Ebola patients safe? Doctor says yes

    Is the discharge of two American Ebola patients safe? Doctor says yes

    Thursday, August 21 2014 6:13 PM EDT2014-08-21 22:13:10 GMT
    Dr. Kent Brantly walked into Thursday's press conference showing no signs of his almost month-long battle with the deadly Ebola virus.
    Dr. Kent Brantly walked into Thursday's press conference showing no signs of his almost month-long battle with the deadly Ebola virus.
  • Cancer survivor celebrates 5 year mark with donor

    Cancer survivor celebrates 5 year mark with donor

    Monday, August 18 2014 6:08 PM EDT2014-08-18 22:08:02 GMT
    If Erin Blonshine ever wondered if her perfect match was out there, now she knows. His name: Johannes Saur. Blonshine, a 29-year-old teacher, says "It's very surreal to stand next to him and know that on the inside our immune systems match."
    If Erin Blonshine ever wondered if her perfect match was out there, now she knows. His name: Johannes Saur. Blonshine, a 29-year-old teacher, says "It's very surreal to stand next to him and know that on the inside our immune systems match."
Powered by WorldNow

35 Skyline Drive
Lake Mary, FL 32746

Phone: (407) 644-3535
News Tips: (866) 55-FOX35

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices