Can’t Never Could encourages Brain Tumor Awareness in May


From Special Reports

May is National Brain Tumor Awareness Month, and a Coweta nonprofit is among those planning to “Go Grey in May” to raise awareness about brain tumors and fund brain tumor research they hope will one day lead to a cure. Go Grey in May is also a reference to the grey ribbon that is the symbol of the fight against brain tumors.

Can’t Never Could, Inc. also observes Go Grey in May each year in honor of its founder, Rob Estes. In August 2013, Rob was diagnosed with Grade IV glioblastoma, an aggressive and incurable form of brain cancer. After the removal of a five-centimeter tumor in his right frontal lobe, he lived on for more than four years, and during his fight with glioblastoma, Rob and his family realized the importance of faith, community, perseverance and hope. They also realized the importance of helping others in their times of adversity, so in 2013, Rob and Christi started a nonprofit to help those facing similar challenges. The name “Can’t Never Could” was inspired by Rob’s mother. He said that when he was growing up and complained about something he couldn’t do, his mom would always reply, “Can’t never could.”

Today, Can’t Never Could says it is “dedicated to helping individuals and groups who are facing adversity and

Rob Estes, one of the founders of Can’t Never Could, Inc.

personal battles. Through monetary donations, support and faith in Jesus Christ, Can’t Never Could wishes to instill determination and hope to those who are experiencing these challenges.”

A well-established nonprofit in the local community, Can’t Never Could is known for its generosity in helping people facing all kinds of adversity in life. Last year alone, they awarded some 44 grants totaling $40, 421.11. These grants assisted individuals with everything from abdominal cancer to brain cancer, breast cancer, leukemia and pancreatic cancer. One of the recipients had been injured in a car accident.

“We serve many areas, but ninety percent of our grants are given to local citizens,” said Christi Estes. In 2018, Can’t Never Could gave $25,000 to the Piedmont Newnan Cancer Center to enhance their massage therapy services.

Can’t Never Could provides college scholarships to high school seniors whose families are facing financial challenges due to cancer or a brain illness, and it also provides scholarships for students with learning disabilities to attend Squirrel Hollow Camp at The Bedford School in Fairburn.

Each March, Can’t Never Could holds a major fundraiser, its Grey Matters Dinner. Past speakers have included Jeremy Williams, Vince and Barbara Dooley, Denise Jackson, Aimee Copeland, Bobby Henline, Inky Johnson and, most recently, Ashley Smith Robinson, author of the book “Unlikely Angel: The Untold Story of the Atlanta Hostage Hero.

“Because of the coronavirus pandemic, we’re expecting an increase in the number of grant applications,” Estes said. “For that reason, we’d love for the community to remember to ‘Go Grey in May’ and help us as we help some of the most vulnerable members of our community.”

According to the American Brain Tumor Association, which advocates on behalf of the brain tumor community in the United States, over 700,000 Americans are living with a brain tumor, and nearly 80,000 more will be diagnosed with a primary brain tumor this year. About 28,000 children in the U.S. are currently fighting brain tumors. The median age at diagnosis for all primary brain tumors is 60, and brain and central nervous system tumors are the third most common cancer among those 15-39.

To make a donation to the Go Grey in May fundraiser, individuals may visit and click on the “Give” tab at the top of the page. For more information, please email [email protected].

Pictured above: After Rob Estes was diagnosed with glioblastoma in 2013, he and his wife, Christi Estes, founded Can’t Never Could, Inc. to serve others facing adversity. Though Rob passed away in 2017, the work of Can’t Never Could continues, and the local nonprofit encourages everyone to “Go Grey in May” to raise awareness about brain tumors.

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