NAGS HEAD, N.C.—The Outer Banks Hospital’s Cancer Resource Center has challenged the gentlemen of The East Carolina Bank (ECB) to wear pink in October as part of national breast cancer awareness month. “We chose The East Carolina Bank to kick off the campaign as the Bank was our lead sponsor for our Cancer Resource Center,” said Van Smith, hospital president. “In 2005, ECB stepped up to the plate with a 5-year $25,000 pledge to the Center, which set the pace for the Center to open in record time.”

By wearing pink, the men send a visual message to encourage women to schedule their yearly mammograms. With cancer the leading cause of death in Dare County and breast cancer the most common form of cancer among women, Skipper Hines, senior vice president and Outer Banks regional executive for ECB, could not pass up the challenge. “Our guys are on board and will be wearing their pink shirts on Fridays,” Hines said. “And we challenge all the other men in our community to wear pink in October.”

Charles Hardy, Chairman of the hospital’s Development Council, the entity that raised the funding to open the Cancer Resource Center, has started surfing the ‘net for a pink zoot suit. “You know, guys never get a chance to nag their wives about their health. Usually it’s the other way around,” he added.

According to the American Cancer Society, the best defense against breast cancer is finding it early, when it is most treatable. “The key to mammography screening is that it be done routinely – once is not enough,” said Betse Kelly, Cancer Resource Center Coordinator. The hospital’s Center is dedicated to helping patients and their families better understand their diagnosis and treatment and cope with the disease.

The services of social worker Betse Kelly, who staffs the Center, are available at no charge to assist patients and their families and friends as they navigate the system. “Basically, I’m here to help, anyway that I can,” said Kelly. “I encourage people to call me at the Center, 449-7350 or email me at [email protected] Sometimes connecting with the right person, whether it’s a social worker, physician, support group or other cancer survivor, can make all the difference.”

To schedule your group photo for “Real Men Wear Pink” contact the hospital’s marketing department at 449-9184.

Today rated one the nations’ strongest banks and in 1998 recognized as one of the “Ten Most Generous Companies in America”, ECB has seven offices serving the residents and communities of the Outer Banks: Avon, Currituck, Hatteras, Manteo, Nags Head, Ocracoke, and Southern Shores. The Company’s common stock is listed on The Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol “ECBE”. More information can be obtained by visiting ECB’s web site at or by calling 800-849-2265.

Photo note: The Gentlemen of ECB: Front row: Skipper Hines, Jim Troutman, David Joyner, Norm Campbell, Landon Price. Back row: Bill Rea, Matt Winstead, Jason Guill, Henry Sieloff, Barrett Bodiford.