I had my thyroid removed and had a nice red scar for a year before it faded.
I used the following:
-- the truth
-- Neck surgery
-- bar fight
-- I can't talk about it (said with eyes cast downward)
No one really cares. Make something up or tell the truth.
I had thyroid surgery on Friday, the 13th of June.
I told people that I'd been an extra in the movie "Friday the 13th Part II," which had been filmed that summer (nowhere near me), and there was an accident.
I told people that I'd been riding a snowmobile on summer break and we hit a barb wire fence.
Or I said, "Oh, thyroid surgery." I didn't mention the cancer.
And I once told an acquaintance, " I really don't want to answer your question--please stop prying. And no, don't make assumptions about how emotionally upset I am by your questions."
Among them can be, "I'm sorry--do we know each other personally?"