OPINION | Stories Remind Us To “Stay Positive”

In the fall of 2010, Eric Day was diagnosed with a benign tumor.
A tumor is an abnormal growth of cells, but a benign tumor  grows in a certain spot and typically does not spread throughout the body.
However it can be harmful if it presses against vital structures like blood vessels or nerves.
Day should be a junior at Butler, but he stands proud as a first-semester sophomore.
Because of the tumor, he had to learn to walk and talk again.
But during radiation treatment, he met a six-year-old girl battling trachea cancer. She changed his life and would help him change the lives of others, just by signing a card with two simple words: “Stay positive.”
She helped Day find himself as an elementary education major during the time they spent together through treatment, which included Day tutoring the girl.
Day decided to create wristbands engraved with “Stay positive” to remind himself that somebody else has it worse than him.
His motto is, “You can’t always control what happens in life, but you CAN control your attitude.”
A Facebook page was created to promote the motto and wristbands. Within three days, the page had 450 likes.
Proceeds from the wristband sales will go to cancer research, but Day said he needs big names to promote it.
In the past month, people from Texas, South Carolina and St. Louis have wanted to order the wristbands.
“I honestly didn’t think it was going to get this big, Day said. “I’ve been approached by Relay for Life, and every day I get on Facebook, it seems like I have a new message.”
“Like his motto, he never got down on himself,” sophomore Matt Scheetz said, “and staying positive always stuck with him.”
Scheetz went to high school with Day and remembers seeing him in the hospital. Scheetz said he never wanted to see it again.
He refused to look at the picture Day showed me in the interview.
“It brought everyone closer, but it’s just a reminder to be thankful because every day is a blessing,” Scheetz said.
Day said you can go from top to bottom in a split second.
Day’s motto is improving lives across the nation and is also improving lives on Butler’s campus.
Day was approached by junior men’s basketball player Erik Fromm for wristbands to give to his family as a reminder to “Stay positive” while grieving the loss of his father, Leonard Fromm.
Day said the motto represented Fromm’s father and his personality.
Jim Peal, head strength and conditioning coach for Butler athletes, was recently diagnosed with colon cancer.
Peal was approached by junior volleyball player Maggie Harbison with a “Stay positive” wristband to help him through the difficult times.
A Facebook page was also created for Peal, on which students posted encouraging stories that were brought to the coach by former players.
Peal dedicated most of his time to athletes from 5 a.m. until late in the evening prior to his diagnosis.
Butler athletes took it upon themselves to start selling wristbands engraved with “Peal Strong” to raise money for cancer research.
“It feels great to help out,” senior football player Sean Grady said. “(Peal) helped me become a better player, athlete and the person that I am today. He always tried to help everyone, so it’s great to help him out and show him what he truly means to us.”
The stories of these men are true inspirations. Day and Peal have touched many lives with their attitude and character. They should inspire all of us to “Stay positive” and be “Peal Strong.”