In 2015, Phil de Gruy was a successful restaurateur in his 40s. He owned and operated three locations of the popular burger restaurant Phil’s Grill. He had a loving wife and four children. But he was beset by severe stomach pain. Doctors kept telling him it was stress, and the restaurant business in a competitive market like the greater New Orleans area can definitely be stressful. One day in fall 2015, the stomach pain was so intense that de Gruy couldn’t even stand up straight. His employees convinced him to go the emergency room. Shortly thereafter, he was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer. A CAT scan revealed a 8-centimeter mass that had perforated his colon.

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