Chadwick Boseman, the beloved actor who played many of the greatest Black characters in history, including one of his most notable, “Black Panther,” has died. He was 43.
We, along with just about everybody else, are shocked. How could this handsome, well-respected, super talented, and beautiful Black man be gone so soon?
A statement on his official twitter account read, “It is with immeasurable grief that we confirm the passing of Chadwick Boseman,” the statement read. “It was the honor of his life to bring King T’Challa to life in Black Panther.”
Before he was cast as the Marvel Studios superhero, Boseman’s career first exploded with his portrayals of Black American icons Jackie Robinson in 2013 in “42” and James Brown in 2014 in “Get on Up.” Boseman also appeared in Spike Lee’s “Da 5 Bloods” in 2020, and played Thurgood Marshall in 2017 in “Marshall.”
The statement went on to say that “Chadwick was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer in 2016, and battled with it these last 4 years as it progressed to stage IV.”
“A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all, and brought you many of the films you have come to love so much. From Marshall to Da 5 Bloods, August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and several more, all were filmed during and between countless surgeries and chemotherapy.”
“It was the honor of his career to bring King T’Challa to life in Black Panther.”
To read that he suffered through pain just to bring us enjoyment and excellence is a heartfelt reminder of how great this man’s dedication to his craft, and us, was.
When he was diagnosed with stage III colorectal cancer, he battled a lot. Stage III is divided into three categories:
Stage IIIA: The cancer has grown into the intestine wall, through the mucosa (the inner lining) and into the submucosa and may have entered the muscle. The cancer has spread to up to three lymph nodes near the site of the primary tumor.
Stage IIIB: The cancer has grown into or through the outermost layer of the colon or rectum and may have spread into nearby organs or tissues. The cancer has spread to up to three lymph nodes near the primary site, but has not spread to distant organs.
Stage IIIC:The cancer has grown into or through the outermost layer of the colon or rectum and may have spread to four or more lymph nodes near the primary site. The cancer has also spread to nearby organs.
Boseman’s cancer advanced to Stage IV, that is the most advanced stage of colorectal cancer. When a person has been diagnosed with stage IV colorectal cancer, it means that the cancer has metastasized to distant sites, such as the liver or lungs. The cancer may, or may not, have grown through the wall of the colon or rectum, and lymph nodes may, or may not, have been affected.
Each year, about 140,000 Americans are diagnosed with colon cancer, and more than 50,000 die from it. That’s bad news, but for African-Americans, it’s even worse.
“African-Americans are more likely to get colon cancer, they’re more likely to have an advanced stage of disease when they’re diagnosed with colon cancer, they’re more likely to die from colon cancer and they have shorter survival after diagnosis with colon cancer,” said Dr. Fola May, assistant professor of medicine at UCLA and a researcher at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
That’s why there is such a need for Black men to get screened for colon cancer. Consult your physician. Ask other men who’ve gotten the test done. Do something to fight this awful disease.
According to those who grew up with Boseman, he was always destined to be a success. “We knew when he was a