Neil Chittenden is a face well known to most in Seymour and surrounding towns such as Nagambie and Avenel through his work as an Ambulance Victoria officer - but he’s had a big health scare of his own.By Carol Smith
Neil Chittenden came to Seymour during his primary schooling and finished his education at the-then Seymour Technical High School. He completed an apprenticeship with the SEC then trained for the ambulance service in Gippsland.
Mr Chittenden returned to Seymour in 1975 and is well known to the local community as an ambulance officer. He and wife Lesley have raised four children in Seymour and he has been involved in the community through school councils and the local SES.
Mr Chittenden is also a cancer survivor. When he turned 50 he went to his local GP for a check up which included a prostate examination and established a Prostate Specific Antigen base line result.
Five years later there was a slight increase in the PSA level but he was not overly concerned. Mr Chittenden started having more regular tests and at 59 recorded a significant increase in the PSA result. So it was time to see a urologist for a more detailed examination and biopsy. He heard the words ‘‘you have cancer’’ just as 78 Victorians are told each day.
Currently 172 Mitchell Shire residents are diagnosed with cancer each year.
Mr Chittenden investigated the treatment options of surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy and chose the surgery option, because of his grade and stage of cancer. He was keen to return to work after eight weeks’ recovery time and did not suffer some of the serious side effects of prostate cancer surgery. As a health worker, he was able to deal with the mental side of a cancer diagnosis and coped with the treatment because he knew what was happening to his body.
When speaking of his cancer experience, he said it was important for all men to have regular health check ups rather than avoid the issue.
‘‘Men need to face up to what is happening to your body,’’ he said.
Mr Chittenden found plenty of support through the health system but warned of ‘‘Dr Google’’ for self diagnosis. It was better to use a reliable website like www.cancervic.org.au or call the Cancer Helpline on 131
He encouraged all his former patients to support the Seymour Relay For Life on the weekend of September 21-22 at Kings Park.
The overnight team event is a great way for the community to come together to celebrate the survivors, remember loved ones and to fight back against cancer.
Contact Seymour Relay For Life on 5792
Tatura’s Jennifer Hippisley will head up a state education advisory group after being elected as the chair of the Victorian Local Learning and Education Network Broker Network.
After a tennis career spanning 62 years, of which the last 35 years have been as a coach, Yarrawonga's Jon Coleman is set to retire at the end of 2013.
The recent Kyabram Master Pairs, played over six days with crack sides from near and far, attracted some talented bowlers eager to win the prestige event.
A frequent visitor to northern Victoria, Care Connect's Graham Custance recently won a national award for his work supporting indigenous elders to achieve better health and wellbeing.
Three Goornong Fire Brigade firefighters recently completed a CFA course on safety surrounding urban firefighting and using breathing apparatuses.
Kyabram Lawn Tennis Club’s annual junior singles tournament again attracted good numbers from across the district.
But have opponents given up the fight?
Tocumwal Pre-School students are proudly flying their KITE at the Tocumwal Lions Community Hostel.
Tooborac Fire Brigade visited Tooborac Primary School last Tuesday to help the school complete its bushfire emergency management plan.
Residents urged to renew fruit fly baits to support local orchards.
A Korean company has a proposal with the NSW Government to built a $90 million ethanol plant in Deniliquin.
SPC Ardmona, is sending eight containers loaded with $250,000 of fruit and vegetables to cyclone ravaged Philippines.
The hunt is on for a buyer for Benalla and Mansfield Toyota after the business went into receivership last fortnight.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.