POSTED Saturday, October 5, 2013 --- 7:15 p.m.
Reporter: Phil Levin
After a gambling habit led to his son's death, a father is trying to raise awareness about the addiction while he can.
Robert McGuigen's 28-year-old son Jason McGuigen was murdered in 2003 in Verona along with two friends staying at his house. Police believed Meng-Ju Wu, a Taiwanese student attending UW-Madison, killed McGuigen after he failed to place a sports bet that would have won big. Wu hung himself in his cell before his trial.
Since his son's death, Robert McGuigen has been speaking to students, educators and others about an addiction he knows can be as deadly as alcohol or drugs. His message now has added urgency.
"I just found out nine days ago that I'm terminal. I have cancer, it's inoperable, incurable, I don't have very long left to live," said McGuigen, "It scares me that I'm not going to be able to follow through on my dreams to be able to travel across this country to be able to bring the awareness out to parents, to teachers."
McGuigen fears parents may not educate about gambling the way they do other vices, and may not even be aware their children are accessing offshore betting sites or gambling on fantasy sports. He also fears movies, like the recently released Runner, Runner, may glorify a gambling lifestyle.
McGuigen asked NBC 15 to pass along his email address, email@example.com, for anyone that wants to know more about or needs help with gambling addiction.