Dan Dubé is remembered as the vibrant, committed and empathetic champion of the ACC patient community that, more than anyone, he helped build. Diagnosed in 1998, Dan became very active in patient gatherings and online groups, providing educational and emotional support to patients struggling to deal with their diagnosis. In 2009, he became president of the Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma Organization International (ACCOI), using his boundless energy to continue building bridges and guiding patients towards better treatment plans. Dan passed away on May 3, 2012.
One of his favorite quotations – of which there were many – came from the French-Canadian artist Paul-Elime Borduas : “My goal is the expression of the essential in an increasingly simple way.” Dan achieved that goal by sharing his personal ACC journey with candor, humor and emotion. He gathered technical information and motivated community members to explain what was essential to patients stunned by their cancer diagnosis. Dan took pride in having personally met with more than 120 ACC patients. But his impact was felt far more broadly across the thousands of patients and family members who benefited from his compassionate and meticulous advice.
The poet Maya Angelou provided another of Dan’s favorite quotations: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Dan will never be forgotten by the many patients whom he made feel calm, informed, hopeful and part of a caring community.