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From survivor to dream car driver

When asked whether Robert Peressotti, the 2018 winner of  Rock the Road Raffle and a brand new Porsche 911 Carrera, would be purchasing Raffle tickets again in 2019, the answer was a resounding, “Of course!” He didn’t want to miss the chance to win an enviable car and give to a cause that’s close to his heart.

“It was pretty surreal when I found out I won,” says Robert. “It’s an exciting car and an exciting story. We’ve made so many strides in detection and treatment over the last 10 years and it takes money to continue that research.”
Clockwise from top left: Prostate Cancer Canada President & CEO, Peter Coleridge; Prostate Cancer Canada Vice President, Finance & Regulatory Affairs, Tom Fischer; Robert Peresotti; Robert’s wife, Sharon Peressotti
Clockwise from top left: Prostate Cancer Canada President & CEO, Peter Coleridge; Prostate Cancer Canada Vice President, Finance & Regulatory Affairs, Tom Fischer; Robert Peresotti; Robert’s wife, Sharon Peressotti

Taking your health into your own hands

The exciting story is that Robert is an 11-year prostate cancer survivor. While looking for a used Porsche, he came across the Raffle on the Canadian International AutoShow’s website. “It was like it was meant to be,” said Robert, “I had just dreamt about driving a Porsche the night before.” What clinched it was that the proceeds directly support Prostate Cancer Canada: “I donate every year anyway, and on top of that the draw was the day before my wife’s birthday.”

The win was the light at the end of tunnel for Robert who has a family history of the disease. After a friend was diagnosed with prostate cancer and encouraged Robert and others to talk to their doctors, Robert did just that. “I tried to put it off,” he admits, because he hadn’t experienced any symptoms, but a PSA test indicated elevated levels, and a biopsy confirmed cancer. After surgery and 36 treatments of radiation, he received the good news that he was cancer-free.

“It was certainly a roller coaster,” he recalls. “I’ve been very lucky. But the important thing is I’m here to tell my story and encourage other guys to discuss it with their doctor, because it’s important.”

Aside from taking his friends out for a spin, Robert is using his win to talk about his experience. He says many of his friends have now gone to their own doctors to discuss their options for getting tested. In his small town of Port Colborne, the story is out and now even more people know the importance of being aware of the disease. “It’s all about knowledge,” he says.

Vroom with a view

The summer after Robert's big win was a whirlwind for his family, the first they enjoyed with their Porsche. “It’s been a great summer!” Robert said, lamenting that his prized possession was to be in storage for the winter. Before packing it away, Robert and his wife took a road trip to the States, visiting Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. 

Sharon Peressotti, Robert’s wife, during their road trip to Maine
Sharon Peressotti, Robert’s wife, during their road trip to Maine

Robert and his wife planned a second road trip last spring to Canada’s East Coast along the Cabot Trail.

Robert’s Porsche, and the seven previous Rock the Road Raffle vehicles, were generously donated by the Trillium Automobile Dealers Association (TADA). Last year’s raffle alone raised over $600,000, and since 2013, ticket purchasers have contributed $2.5 million to improve the lives of the 1 in 9 Canadian men, and their families, who will be diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Robert and his son enjoying the new Porsche at their home outside of Port Colborne
Robert and his son enjoying the new Porsche at their home outside of Port Colborne


Posted: 2019-01-07 11:52:08 AM
Filed under: cancer, prostate, raffle, road, rock, survivor, the, winner


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