From our News Partners at WCBD-TV:
It's a legend. An icon. A Charleston landmark. It's got it's own Facebook group, a change.org page begging for it's return, it even has a band named after it. But for the past six years, it's been missing.
"I was nervous. My wife was nervous. My kids had never seen me without a mustache before but you know what, once I lost it, it felt right and I never looked back," says News 2 Chief Meteorologist Rob Fowler of his legendary mustache. But starting tomorrow, Rob mustache will make its triumphant return to the Lowcountry.
"Anything I can do to get out there and bring awareness, to make sure that men get themselves checked out. If it means growing the mustache back, I'm all for it," says Rob. He will be growing back the famous 'stache for "Movember" which is an initiative to raise awareness for men's health issues. But there's a reason he lost it in the first place.
"I'm a cancer survivor. And I went through cancer. And we decided, to raise money for the cancer society, we'd go ahead and shave it live on the air," explains Rob of his decision. He shaved his mustache live on air during a 6 PM broadcast in May of 2007.
But Rob's not alone in facing cancer. Another one of our News 2 family, PJ Ryal, battled and beat lung cancer.
"A year ago yesterday, I was diagnosed with lung cancer, stage 3A lung cancer. And found that I needed to go in to pretty aggressive program right away. It lead to surgery in January. And I was declared in remission in May and once again in August. And came back to work around Labor Day. And I'm thrilled to be back here at Channel 2," says PJ of the last year.
The message from both men is the same
"I've been cancer free since 2005. February 1st of 2005. So 8 years and counting. And I'm just blessed to see every single new day. When the sun comes up, it's a new day to me," Rob says of surviving cancer.
"The end of my story is not only did I beat cancer, but I've lived to become a grandfather as my youngest daughter will be delivering our first grandchild in February. So I would say to all the men that want to live the full life and enjoy it all, take good care of yourself," advises PJ.
Rob and PJ will both be growing mustaches as part of the "Movember" men's health initiative here at News 2, along with many of our other co-workers. So don't be surprised to see mustaches start popping up on the air this month.
Image courtesy of WCBD-TV. Mustache courtesy of Rob Fowler.