Press Releases & Announcements

Danbury and New Milford Hospitals Invite Cancer Survivors to its Annual National Cancer Survivors Day® Program

Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - Danbury, CT

2013 National Cancer Survivor's DayBrett Leake, the first comedian with a physical disability to appear on NBC's The Tonight Show with Jay Leno in 1991, will be the featured guest at Western Connecticut Health Network's Annual National Cancer Survivors Day program on Sunday, June 2, 2013. The celebratory program takes place at the Ethan Allen Hotel, 21 Lake Avenue in Danbury-Exit 4, off I-84.

The Annual National Cancer Survivors Day program is sponsored by the Praxair Cancer Center at Danbury Hospital and the Diebold Family Cancer Center at New Milford Hospital in partnership with Ann's Place, The Home of I CAN, the American Cancer Society, and support from the CT Challenge. The program starts with check-in at 8:30 a.m., followed by a breakfast buffet at 9 a.m. The guest speaker presentation follows the breakfast buffet.

About the Speaker

Brett Leake worked as standup comic from 1983 until 1997 when he began working as a sitdown standup comic. In 1998, he also started to work as a funny motivational speaker adding to his standup act personal stories that were called 'philosophic lecturettes' that address using humor as a problem-solving device, and as a means to get more out of life.

Leake performed at the Smithsonian, the Kennedy Center, and Wolftrap. Corporate clients include IBM, Toyota, and Ford. Brett has facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy. When he appeared on The Tonight show in 1991, Jay Leno said, "He broke up the whole room. People realized here's a man with a disability and he's not gonna' let it bother him."

Leake's other television appearances include Entertainment Tonight and the American Comedy Awards. In 2003, public broadcasting stations around the country began running his hour-long comedy special "Laughing Matters with Brett Leake".

Seating for the free event is limited to a cancer survivor along with a guest. A "cancer survivor" is defined as anyone living with a history of cancer - from the moment of diagnosis through the remainder of life.

Registration to attend this annual special event is required, and must be made by May 28th. To register, please call Ann's Place, The Home of I CAN at (203) 790-6568, Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

About Western Connecticut Health Network

Western Connecticut Health Network is the region's premier, patient-centered health care organization serving residents of Western Connecticut and adjacent New York. The organization is anchored by two nationally recognized hospitals, Danbury Hospital and New Milford Hospital, as well as their affiliated organizations. In addition to the two hospitals, the continuum of care offered includes the following affiliates:

  • Western Connecticut Medical Group, an integrated physician practice with primary and specialty care expertise
  • Western Connecticut Home Care, an agency for home care and community health services
  • The Western Connecticut Health Network Foundations
  • emergency medical and Level II trauma services
  • an occupational wellness and medicine program, providing services for business and industry
  • a nationally renowned Biomedical Research Institute

Western Connecticut Health Network has centers of excellence in women's health, cardiovascular and cancer services; minimally invasive joint and spine surgery; digestive disorders, weight-loss (bariatric) surgery, and radiology and diagnostic imaging. It also offers specialized programs for neonatology with a Level IIIb neonatal intensive care unit and accredited sleep disorder centers. Both hospitals also maintain active clinical research programs, offering clinical trials for patients with cancer and other health concerns. Danbury Hospital was named a Top 100 Hospital by US News and World reports in 2012; a and a Top 100 for Value by Cleverly and Associates. New Milford Hospital is well known as a Planetree hospital and for its Plow to Plate, farm to table food program.

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Imagine Build Transform: The Campaign for Western Connecticut Health Network

Western Connecticut Health Network is conducting a capital campaign to meet patients' changing needs with next generation facilities, resources, talent, and technologies. Our priority areas are the Patient Tower, Emergency Department, and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Danbury Hospital, the Emergency Department at New Milford Hospital, and the Biomedical Research Institute. To learn more, please call the Foundation office at (203) 739-7227 or visit us at