Singer Charlie Wilson highlights prostate cancer risk

April 1, 2010 3:09:48 PM PDT
R&B singer Charlie Wilson joined Mayor Richard Daley at Navy Pier Thursday to raise awareness of prostate cancer.

Wilson, the lead singer of the Gap Band, is a prostate cancer survivor. He was first diagnosed with the disease in 2008, and Thursday he encouraged men to get screened.

"I just say to all the men: just man up and go get a checkup," said Wilson. "I know you are ashamed - some of us are ashamed to go get the exam. But I say to you: it's senseless to die of shame."

Daley said one in every six American men are diagnosed with the disease each year. He also thanked Wilson for using his fame and talent to help fight the disease.

Prostate cancer killed 27,000 men in the U.S. last year. Statistics show that African-American men are almost 1.6 times more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer than Caucasian men.

April is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month.