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The one hundred honoree: CJay DiPrima and Tom Mullin

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: CJay DiPrima and Tom Mullin

Mass General Giving

A cancer diagnosis at any age can be overwhelming. However, for a 19-year-old college freshman on the cusp of discovering himself as an independent adult, it can feel life-shattering. That’s how it felt initially for CJay DiPrima.

In December 2012, CJay received the news he had a rare form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. He faced months of chemotherapy and radiation at MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC) Cancer Center and an uncertain outcome. CJay found his situation extremely difficult both mentally and physically. However, family and friends urged him to think positively, and CJay adopted “Stay positive” as his mantra.

When CJay came through treatment with flying colors, he and his best friend, Tom Mullin, turned his mantra into a logo, “Stay+” and launched a clothing company called Stay Positive Apparel. All the company’s merchandise—from wristbands to T-shirts—are emblazoned with the logo. The logo’s plus sign can be ordered in a variety of colors associated with different types of cancer. Lime green represents lymphoma. A portion of the proceeds of every Stay Positive Apparel sale benefits the MGHfC pediatric cancer program.

“CJay maintained a very upbeat attitude through therapy and got back quickly into the swing of college life shortly after completing treatment,” says Howard Weinstein, MD, unit chief, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at MGHfC and CJay’s oncologist. “CJay recognized that his attitude was very important in getting him through some tough times, and he wanted to share that with others who were being treated for cancer.”