Lowcountry firefighter surprised at bell-ringing to mark end of cancer treatments

VIDEO: Colleagues surprise St. Paul's firefighter as he marks end of cancer treatments

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Friends, family and fellow firefighters surprised one of their own Tuesday as he marked the completion of chemotherapy.

St. Paul’s firefighter Charles Brandon Gruber was diagnosed with breast cancer and spent the past 20 weeks taking treatment.

He rang a bell, a tradition for cancer patients who complete their treatment regimen, with loved ones looking on at the Roper St. Francis Cancer Center.

“It makes you know you’re loved and it really is a brotherhood. Everybody looks out for each other no matter if it’s somebody who’s kid is just sick or somebody that’s terminally ill or anything like that,” Gruber said. “We spend more time with these people than we do our own family... so it means a lot.”

The American Cancer Society projected 2,670 new cases of invasive breast cancer in men would be diagnosed and that approximately 500 men would die from the disease.

It is about 100 times less common among white men than among white women and about 70 times less common in black men than black women, the organization says.

Gruber and his squad are rallying support for a proposed statewide law that would protect firefighters diagnosed with cancer.

Copyright 2019 WCSC. All rights reserved.