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York City hip-hop artist raises money for breast cancer patients

Logan Hullinger
York Dispatch

Kwame Katana, a popular hip-hop artist from York City, knows the pain of having a family member die of breast cancer.

Two of his aunts have succumbed to what is the second most common type of cancer among women in the U.S. Now, he's using his platform to raise money for the cause by selling custom merchandise through October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

York hip-hop artist Kwame Katana poses outside PeoplesBank Stadium Friday, Oct. 16, 2020, wearing a breast cancer awareness hoodie he and a friend designed. Katana has partnered with the York Revolution, Crispus Attucks, and the Spanish American Multicultural Resource Center, which are all raising awareness for breast cancer during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The clothing is available on the York Revolution website. Bill Kalina photo
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 Bill Kalina photo

“When we was going through it, it was real hard because I didn’t know until after (my aunts') passed that they had breast cancer,” Katana said. “They kind of hid it from the family because they didn’t want people to worry or be sad. They just wanted everyone to feel like everything was normal.”

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To honor his aunts and the millions of women who have battled the disease, Katana designed a pink hoodie with his personalized "K" logo that is being sold on the York Revolution website.

Katana said he came up with the idea after overwhelming feedback in response to merchandise he sold this past summer to advertise his new album, "If Not Me, Then Who."

After thinking of his aunts, whom he described as a major support system early in his rap career, he decided on bright pink.

And he's only learned more about breast cancer during the project, he said.

York hip-hop artist Kwame Katana poses outside PeoplesBank Stadium Friday, Oct. 16, 2020, wearing a breast cancer awareness hoodie he and a friend designed. Katana has partnered with the York Revolution, Crispus Attucks, and the Spanish American Multicultural Resource Center, which are all raising awareness for breast cancer during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The clothing is available on the York Revolution website. Bill Kalina photo
.



 Bill Kalina photo

“I didn’t realize until now how many people are affected by breast cancer and how common it is,” he said.

Behind skin cancers, breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among American women, according to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

In 2020 alone, it is estimated that 276,480 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in the U.S.

It is also estimated more than 42,000 will die from the disease.

“I just want to pay homage to them,” Katana said.

Katana's efforts are in partnership with the York Revolution, Crispus Attucks and the Spanish American Multicultural Resource Center, which are all raising awareness for breast cancer this month.

Those wishing to purchase a hoodie can do so on the Revs' website for $50.

Proceeds will go to Pink Power, a York-based nonprofit organization that raises money for breast cancer patients.

— Logan Hullinger can be reached at lhullinger@yorkdispatch.com or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.