Frank, age 63
Frank Migliore is eager to attend his 45th high school reunion next month – a feeling far different from what he experienced prior to the last one. He was 135 pounds heavier then, and as he put it, “not looking too good.”
Two years ago, Frank attended the Men’s Health Event at Ford Field in Detroit and his entire life changed as a result. He has taken control of his health.
“I was having trouble doing just about everything,” he said of his life “before.” “Walking was tough. Getting around was difficult. Now, every time I’m at the gym and I’m doing lunges with 50-pound weights in each hand, I think about the fact that I used to walk around with this weight all the time. When you lose that much weight and then pick it back up – it really hits you.”
One day in 2017, Frank heard an ad on the radio for the Men’s Health Event. A few days later, he saw it on the news and then on the internet.
“I thought, okay, I have to do something,” Frank said. “I was 365 pounds and my father, brother and grandfather all died of heart attacks. My own heart was showing signs of stress and my blood pressure was extremely high. I wanted to learn more.”
His takeaway from the first time he attended the event was that he wasn’t alone.
“That was a big one for me,” he said. “There were a lot of guys there. It was a huge stimulant for me. I started walking and lost 60 pounds. I went again the next year and my blood pressure was down but now I had a PSA issue. My prostate was enlarged. That really challenged me even more. I went through a laser TURP procedure and that was fantastic – I recommend that to anyone who needs it. It was absolutely phenomenal. I was back at it in three days and after that I had normal function. A lot of men have issues of that nature – I like to say I went from a squirt gun to a fire hose, and they all get it. I also went on a diet and started working out at the gym – it was life changing for me.”
Born and raised in Detroit and now living in Clarkston, Frank, 63, works as an investment banker. He has three grown children, four grandkids and a 3-year-old Great Dane named Blue. Golf and running are now a big part of his life – two things he wasn’t able to do just a couple of years ago. He also goes to the gym for an hour six days a week, participating in a boot-camp style program, which focuses on both fitness and nutrition.
As a result of his transformation and new outlook on life, Frank is ready to walk into his high school reunion with confidence.
“I look forward to being there, and it feels wonderful,” he said. “We’ve lost a lot of folks over the years, and I’m determined to stay alive.”
Nathaniel, age 67
Nathaniel Hinton is a humble, private man. At 67, the born-and-raised Detroiter works as a medical records technician. He’s a father to three grown children and grandfather to five youngsters. He was once an avid bowler, and he lights up at the little things, such as “a good ink pen.”
There’s one thing about Nathaniel only a few people are aware of in his inner circle. But he’s willing to be bold and share his story if there’s a chance it may help someone else.
He’s battling prostate cancer.
The diagnosis came as a surprise to Nathaniel, who takes his health seriously. Through his job, he has health insurance and regularly sees a doctor for check-ups. He has suffered from Crohn’s Disease for years and a car accident left him with a foot injury that ended his bowling hobby. He thought these were his only ailments, but that wasn’t the case.
Nathaniel’s saving grace was the MIU Men’s Health Event, held annually at Ford Field in Detroit and presented by the MIU Men’s Health Foundation. The free event provides a variety of health screenings to men 18 and older with or without health insurance.
“I went for the first time about five years ago,” he said. “I’d never been to an event like this before, so I said, ‘why not?’ I was surprised at how many men were there. Some went with their wives, girlfriends or kids, but I went alone. It was a very good experience for me – I go every year now. I’ve learned so much.”
During last year’s event, Nathaniel learned his PSA levels had jumped from the year prior, and the revelation eventually led to a prostate cancer diagnosis by his doctor.
“I’d never heard of ‘PSA levels’ before,” he said. “This was something that was brand-new to me. My doctor had never ordered that kind of test. Luckily, I went to the health event and did the screening, and they were able to catch it early. If I hadn’t, I could have been at stage four by the time my doctor ordered it. But they caught it early, so that’s good. We’re treating it.”
Nathaniel is proud of his attention to his health, but he knows it’s uncommon.
“Men rarely go to the doctor,” he said. “I’m not sure why. I guess unless we’re hurting, we don’t usually go. Maybe we don’t want to hear bad news.”
Though Nathaniel heard bad news, he’s grateful he did.
“It’s a good thing I went, because I found out about this. It’s better to find out early and not late. Hopefully other people decide to go. It’s fun – I got my hair cut one year. They checked my fat content – who knew you could just squeeze something and they’d figure that out? They also have gifts and trinkets – I love ink pens and they have some good ones.”
The 2019 MIU Men’s Health Event is set for Saturday, Sept. 21, at Ford Field. Learn more: www.TheMensHealthEvent.org.
Jan, age 76
After his daughter passed away from colon cancer when she was just 31 years old, Jan Sigelmier, 76, of Rochester Hills, wasn’t about to lose his son too.
“He had a complete disregard for his health,” Sigelmier said of the 48-year-old. “I thought, he’s getting old and it’s about time for him to get checked out.”
Sigelmier had heard about the Men’s Health Event at Ford Field in Detroit, presented by the MIU Men’s Health Foundation, which offers free screenings to men 18 and older, with or without health insurance.
“I told him, ‘I’m picking you up at 8 o’clock and we’re going to go see if anything’s wrong with you,’” Sigelmier said.
They not only found out he had diabetes, but there were other serious health issues as well.
“We went to the blood pressure station and they took his – I knew it wasn’t going to be good,” Sigelmier remembered. “She took it again and called someone else over and they took it again. They ended up having a whole conference of medical people. They put him in a wheelchair and brought him over to the EKG area. I thought they were going to send him to the ER because his blood pressure was out of sight.”
Sigelmier and his son were ultimately able to walk out of the event together, but as a result of the experience, his son immediately improved his lifestyle.
“That put the fear of God in him,” Sigelmier said. “He found a good doctor, he’s lost weight, he quit drinking, he’s gotten his blood pressure under control and he’s taking care of his diabetes.”
Sigelmier is beyond grateful for the Men’s Health Event and encourages others to attend.
“This is the best thing going since sliced bread,” he said. “It’s so well organized. And it’s free. You have all these different stations – you can get your blood taken, you can go to a dentist – you can even get a haircut. And it doesn’t take any time at all. I think anyone who can take advantage of it should. It’s really worthwhile and the price is certainly right.”
The 2019 Men’s Health Event is set for Saturday, Sept. 21, at Ford Field. Learn more: www.TheMensHealthEvent.org.