Nexstar will celebrate its annual “Founder’s Day of Caring” on Monday.  

This year, News 2 is partnering with the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. Staff members will spend time putting together care kits for patients of all ages.  

The nonprofit focuses on finding a cure for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis and improving the quality of life of children and adults affected by the diseases.  

MORE: Manchester boy inspires Middle Tennessee to raise money to find Crohn’s disease cure

This year’s cause is one close to News 2’s heart as at least two staff members suffer from the diseases.

News 2 IT Systems Technician Brandon Gibson was diagnosed with colitis, which is the inflammation of the large intestines, 19 years ago when he was just 17.  

“It’s hard to explain, it’s one of those diseases no one wants to talk about because it’s embarrassing because it deals with an embarrassing part of the body, which is going to the bathroom. But we got to get away from the stigma because it’s something that kills people,” Gibson said.  

Since his diagnosis, the young husband and father has undergone 26 surgeries.  

“I’m not afraid to talk about it, but there are a lot of people who don’t want to talk about it,” he said. “It’s being nauseous, body aches, stomach aches. It’s like having the flu 24/7 with weeks on end, and that’s during a bad flare up.”

Gibson said his wife and daughter have been his rock through the difficult times.  

“I can’t say enough about my wife. She’s been through a lot of stuff with me,” he said. “There’s bad times and worse times, but also good triumphs as well and she’s been there for 14 years of it.  She’s seen a lot of surgeries and has been there for 17 of them.”

Saturday, June 22, News 2 staffers will also participate in the Take Steps Walk. We’re asking you to help us support the foundation by donating to the cause.  You can also form your own team.

To donate to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, click here.