Bill Eblin was nauseated and felt like his stomach was filled with acid. Over-the-counter treatments weren’t working, so he was referred to the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center in Miami.
There, a PET scan revealed an abdominal tumor. Elbin, who now lives in Peoria, had the Whipple procedure, a major operation that removes the head of the pancreas, some of the small intestine, the gall bladder and the bile duct.
“The doctor told me I had a few months to live, if they hadn’t cut that thing out,” he said. “It was malignant on the tip of my pancreas. I was getting progressively worse.”
Eblin is attending the Seena Magowitz Foundation’s Power of Us, Dinner on the Diamond on Saturday, March 5. The entire event runs from Friday, March 4, to Sunday, March 6, and is hosted by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
“The Seena Magowitz Foundation is very personal to me,” said Derrick Hall, Arizona Diamondbacks president and chief executive officer. “When my father was diagnosed in 2010, he was stage 4. I look now at where we are versus 10 years ago, and there is hope.”
Funds from the Power of Us event will go toward pancreatic cancer research.”
A military brat, Eblin thought he may be diagnosed with cancer. His father died of pancreatic cancer 30 days before he died. His mother battled brain cancer for 17 years.
“When my father passed and when my mother passed, I thought I had to get my ducks in a row,” he said.
Eblin is a Navy veteran who was stationed around the United States in spots like Bremerton, Washington; Pensacola, Florida; and San Diego. Now he works as a systems engineer for Knight-Swift Transportation.
Eblin and Roger E. Magowitz, founder and chief executive officer of The Seena Magowitz Foundation, are longtime acquaintances.
“We want to host this event in hopes of garnering increased attention for the challenge of pancreatic cancer,” Magowitz said.
“We want to honor those who have fought and are still fighting pancreatic cancer, the worst of all major cancers with the lowest survival rate. We believe in the ‘Power of Us.’”
Eblin added, “My first job out of the Navy, I worked for Roger. He invited me to the event. I support Roger and pancreatic cancer research. There is survival after pancreatic cancer. It just needs a lot of attention.
“It’s one of those diseases that only gets a lot of attention once some movie star dies of it. Not that I’ll ever be a movie star, but the more support I can lend for Roger, the better.”