Skip to main content
Home World U.S. Weather Business Sports Analysis Politics Law Tech Science Health Entertainment Offbeat Travel Education Specials Autos I-Reports
Health News

Your e-mails: Fighting cancer and inaction

Adjust font size:
Decrease fontDecrease font
Enlarge fontEnlarge font

(CNN) -- readers shared powerful stories of sickness and survival in response to a commentary written by Lance Armstrong, one of cycling's all-time greats and possibly the world's best known cancer survivor.

Armstrong said he was losing patience with politicians in Washington amid cuts in funding for cancer research. (Watch Lance Armstrong warn now is not the time to stall Video)

Here are some of the e-mails describing how people are fighting cancer, fighting for those still suffering and fighting to get their voices heard.

Jerry Kelly of Birmingham, Alabama
My dad died of cancer 10 years ago, almost the same time Lance was diagnosed and subsequently founded the Lance Armstrong Foundation. My wife and I met Lance a few years later after I was diagnosed and we went to Austin for the LAF Ride for the Roses (fundraising bike ride). Lance's story had been very inspirational when I found it just minutes after my diagnosis with testicular cancer. What we didn't realize was how much inspiration we would get from other survivors and caregivers as we shared stories. Lance also spoke of something his doctor told him about, the Obligation of the Cured. The important thing to remember is that we can all make a difference if we are willing to give the effort. You don't have to win the Tour de France to join the LiveStrong Army!

Brian D. of Austin, Texas
The costs of this disease even for folks that have good insurance are well beyond reach. Depending on when you discover the cancer and what type of cancer you have, the out-of-pocket costs are far beyond the average person's ability to pay. This is of course assuming that you want to extend your quality of life and you want access to the latest advancements in cancer treatment. We are called society's "catastrophic cases." I am a 4-year survivor of primary brain cancer. The technical name for my disease is anaplastic astrocytoma grade III. It is basically a slow-growing glioblastoma multiforme -- a death sentence. But I am young and up to the challenge. I am a card-carrying member of the LAF organization. I think what Lance is doing is great ... I think this article is great and I think our Congress should give more tax credits to those of us trying to live a normal life. Shame on them for not acting!

Richard Devore of New York
I've lost my family, mostly to cancer, and I cannot believe we can fund pork-barrel bridges and a falsely endorsed war instead of giving our citizens the greatest care. The government can bail out companies that fund it as a machine and give up on us, turning pension funds into mush, but without a fight, we will be pushed aside and one day wait for other to give us funds as was offered for Katrina.

Diane Methot of Orlando, Florida
I'm 46 years old. I have three close friends this year alone who have discovered they have breast cancer. One of the three had to have a mastectomy. I have a coworker in his 30s, young and healthy who has a rare form of cancer and had to have knee replacement. My sister-in-law has liver cancer with a five-year prognosis. All of these people are fighting a war that they should not be fighting. It is people like Lance, who won't give up the fight, that will save the lives of children and adults years from now. We ALL need to make our voices heard. I wear the yellow bracelet in support of these voices and rest assured, my voice is among them.

Scott Joy of Portsmouth, New Hampshire
I'm a 3-year testicular cancer survivor, and an administrator for an Internet support forum for other survivors. As the Lance Armstrong Foundation sagely notes, "Cancer may leave your body, but it never leaves your life." Dealing with cancer is life-changing. I was blind to it before it hit me, but now I see cancer -- and its effect on individuals, families, and society -- every day. I am forever grateful for the LIVESTRONG movement, and the passion and power of the community of cancer survivors.

Marianna Costa, Melbourne, Australia
While I am writing from Australia, unfortunately the experiences of others sound all too familiar in our world. My wonderful father died in 2005 from cancer. The devastation to lives infested by cancer could never be measured in dollars. My conclusion is that cancer treatment is a global business. While I have faith in people of science to rid us from this world catastrophe, there is a global lack of resolve in governments, the corporate sector and medical institutions.

Casey Cronin of Austin, Texas
I'm 19 years old and I was diagnosed with cancer on December 3. I had my first surgery on December 7 and the second surgery on December 22. The pain I experienced was beyond belief. I had to accept the fact that I had cancer, go through with these surgeries, and sit in a hospital on Christmas. The second surgery was to remove my lymph nodes on my back and the nodes came back negative. Without cancer research I might not have been so lucky. I'm outraged that Congress has cut funding towards cancer research but continue to spend an arm and a leg on defense spending. I have a friend with Hodgkins lymphoma and unfortunately he doesn't have insurance. He's 23 and scraping by trying to make sure he might live past his 30s. Cancer is real threat to our health.

Anne Hawkins of Douglasville, Georgia
I was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 36. I am now 42 and I have been diagnosed with breast cancer again -- a different type than the first time. I caught it in time thanks to my diligence in screening. However I am going through chemo for a second time in my life since it was an aggressive cancer and I'm so young. I am appalled that none of our politicians consider this a running topic! And the funding has been cut? That's unbelievable.

Betty Hoffmeister of Taylorville, Illinois
A year ago, October 2005, my daughter was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer of colon and liver. Not given much hope, but she is a fighter and a real sweet person. She takes chemo every other week on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and then is so sick she has to stay in bed for a day or two. But then she gets up and does what ever her little body will let her do. They just say keep doing what you are doing, but we are really worried. I would like for her to hear some real encouraging news soon before she loses the will to keep fighting. God is very good. But we need help.

Susan Sitner of Howell, Michigan
I have a daughter and son-in-law who are "trying" to continue to perform their cancer research in Boston, Massachusetts. The recent cutbacks by government in this area curtails the vast amount of knowledge and tireless work that is needed to help control and eradicate cancer through grant funding. Everyone is affected by this. Our politicians need to spend time in cancer clinics and laboratories to see the actuality of what goes on, and not rely on committees with their pristine statistics and lack of reality.

Do you have a similar story to share? Please send it.

Follow Related Topics

Search TopicE-mail Alerts


Alyssa Sparks, 29, wants to beat her breast cancer for her husband and young son.


• I-Report: Send your story
• Spotlight: Your photos, videos
• Commentary: Read and reply
International Edition
CNN TV CNN International Headline News Transcripts Advertise with Us About Us Contact Us
© 2007 Cable News Network.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us. Site Map.
SERVICES » E-mails RSSRSS Feed PodcastsRadio News Icon CNNtoGo CNN Pipeline
Offsite Icon External sites open in new window; not endorsed by
Pipeline Icon Pay service with live and archived video. Learn more