About six months ago, a Seymour man reached out on Facebook and shared some of his health concerns.
A physical exam had suggested he might have prostate cancer, and he requested prayer for himself and his family, hoping for a miracle or at least the strength to deal with whatever might be lying ahead.
On March 23, Darcy Troville received the results he had been dreading. His test for prostate cancer was positive and he needed to prepare himself for bone and body scans that would ultimately help lead the doctor to his prognosis and a treatment plan.
“I don’t like going public with this news, but I know of folks that want to know so that they can pray for me as I have for them over the years,” Troville said. “I am upbeat and optimistic, and however this ends, it’ll always be good.”
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Family is very important to Troville, especially now. His wife of 28 years, Vivian, has been by his side throughout all of this and is his second set of ears in case he misses something the doctor is trying to explain.
“I was shocked initially with the diagnosis,” Vivian said. “I’m just praying that the treatments will work.”
Vivian also said it helps her knowing that currently her husband is feeling good and enjoying life.
Their youngest son, Justin, and oldest daughter, Andrea, also have accompanied Darcy to the cancer center. The couple have three other children — Jayson, Emily and Jonathon.
After his diagnosis, Darcy was referred to Dr. William Dugan at The Hanson Center in Batesville. Dugan has been practicing medicine in Indiana for more than 40 years, treating adults with a variety of cancer and blood disorders, specializing in prostate and breast cancer.
Diagnosed with Stage IV prostate cancer, Troville had several delays in starting chemotherapy because of other health-related issues but was able to begin treatment Aug. 24. He also has been taking Casodex pills and hormone shots.
“Cancer runs in my family,” he said. “My brother, Tom, has Stage IV prostate, I have a cousin who has prostate cancer and my biological father died of pancreatic cancer. So it’s there, and my kids have to be watchful as they age.”
Troville’s brother, Tom, lives in Nashua, New Hampshire, and their sister, Mona, lives near Knoxville, Tennessee.
Tom found out he had prostate cancer in November 2008. The biopsies taken in January 2009 showed the cancer was aggressive and spreading.
“I opted for the radical surgery to remove the prostate,” Tom said.
During surgery, the doctor almost closed him up because he was already full of cancer but decided to proceed and cut out as much of the cancer as he could.
“Thank God he kept going, or I would not be here today,” Tom said.
After the operation, the doctor discovered there still was cancer in Tom Troville’s body, so the next step was radiation every day for the next eight weeks.
“It took almost a year for the radiation to start working, but slowly, my numbers came down and stayed down for three years before gradually coming up again,” Tom said.
Both Tom and Darcy have very similar cancers. Even with continuous treatment, they will never be cured, but both brothers are loving life and keeping active.
“We speak every day, compare notes and how we feel, but hopefully, we will get a few more years,” Tom said.
Born and raised in Burlington, Vermont, on Lake Champlain, Darcy Troville graduated from Rice Memorial Catholic High School. Later, he attended several different colleges and studied many fields, including aerospace, military science, anthropology, art, music, theology and religion.
He reminisced about growing up in Vermont and waking up every day to the glorious scenery surrounding the city that he has not witnessed anywhere else.
His childhood was filled with climbing mountains, water skiing and swimming in the summertime, followed by snowmobiling, skiing and ice fishing in the winter.
Throughout Darcy’s youth, he had the desire to become a priest and would make weekend visits to the Society of St. Edmond motherhouse once a month for retreats and learned how to live with the priests and brothers. He wanted to join the society and went off to seminary.
“I have had a vastly diverse life,” he said. “It comes from many things that make me what I am.”
Life in politics
Nominated to run for mayor of Burlington when he was young, Darcy Troville had the support of former Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, who served as Darcy’s campaign manager before his own political career took off.
He was at the University of Vermont and actively involved in political science when he met Sanders.
“Bernie lived around the corner from me,” he said. “We met and became good friends.”
The two shared some of the same philosophies and had common interests in politics and wanted to make Vermont a better place.
After many strategy meetings, Troville developed a political platform, and at the caucus, he was nominated as a mayoral candidate, and Sanders stepped up to run the campaign.
“Bernie is a nice guy,” Darcy said. “He is honest, and you can believe what he says. That was a fun part of my life.”
Darcy also has been co-owner of two funeral homes and Vermont’s largest ambulance service at the time, as well as a director of product assurance for an aerospace/defense contractor.
“I had a parallel career of sorts with the Catholic church,” he said. “My first vocation was to the Catholic priesthood, and I withdrew after some years but continue serving in many capacities to the current day.”
Life in Indiana
Troville moved to Indiana after meeting Vivian at a reunion organized by his second cousin, Bishop Louis Gelineau of Providence, in July 1988. The romantic setting was right on the Narragansett Bay in Warwick, Rhode Island.
“Vivian was outright gorgeous at first sight,” Troville said. “She agreed to sing with me for family Mass at the seminary chapel, where Bishop Louis had asked me to do the music.”
They spent the afternoon at the chapel talking and singing. Cupid’s arrow hit, and after the weeklong reunion, Vivian returned to Indiana. It was not long before Darcy packed up and moved to Indianapolis.
When he came to Indiana, he was hired full time as director of religious education at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in downtown Indianapolis. It was the most exciting ministry he ever been part of, he said.
“Everything imaginable occurred there,” he said. “Homeless at the doors to everything else that happens in a large-city downtown parish.”
Music also is a major part of Troville’s life, and he started learning how to play the saxophone and violin at around age 5 and guitar at age 10.
“I started singing in church when it was Latin at around 7 or 8, and the nuns always came to our house to ask me to do something liturgically, which my mom already volunteered me for,” he said.
He also composes music and recently completed the score for a movie that just finished production in Atlanta.
The Trovilles moved to Seymour in August 2008 because of his work with the church.
“… and to be closer to our children and extended family, although most were in Indianapolis, Beech Grove and the Greenwood area,” he said. “We had been gone quite a while for my ministry in Wisconsin and Minnesota.
“I would like to do a screening (of the movie) in Seymour when the time is right and see what people think,” he said.
Darcy still enjoys playing his guitar and singing. He performed with friend Rob Daugherty this past summer at Phat Guys Sports Bar and Grill in North Vernon.
Dealing with cancer
As for his advice to others who have been diagnosed with cancer, Darcy suggests for people to relax and not dwell on the diagnosis but rather on how they feel. His relationship with others means more to him rather than how the cancer could affect him.
“I cannot explain my calm other than my faith and my continual reliance on prayer to get me through, not just this cancer, but any rough spots in life which are out of our control,” he said.
He said he has really not changed much of anything during this process and is living life normally. He has a good support system and thinks his family is more worried about him than he is since he is still feeling good and remains active.
“I joke that if I lose my hair, I will get a tattoo and buy a Harley,” he said. “But whether I really would do this is being left to the imagination.”