I talk to other cancer survivors, and I think a lot of people feel like they’re alone when they’re going through this. I tell them, “You’re not alone, there are a lot of us in this battle together.” I should know—I’ve been through it six times.
I thank God for my wife, Anna. We’ve been married 31 years, and she’s my rock. She’s also a respiratory therapist, so she knows a lot more about this medical stuff than I do. A lot of the decisions I’ve made might not have made had it not been for her.
I’m about to turn 84, feel good, and look much younger than my years.
My wife Alice and I have been married 54 years and live in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. We have two sons, a daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren.
A Surprise Diagnosis
In April 2020, a routine blood test showed that my white blood cell count had dropped. At first, my general practitioner thought I had a vitamin B12 deficiency and gave me injections and supplements for a few months. When my counts didn’t improve, I was referred to an oncologist.
As 29, Heather Walters was shocked to learn she was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia, or ALL, in July 1998. Healther sought treatment at the Fox Chase Cancer Center-Temple University Hospital Bone Marrow Transplant program, where she underwent chemotherapy followed by a bone marrow transplant. After a successful surgery, Healther returned to working full-time as a physician assistant and returned to running. "I feel like my old self again," she said. "I continue to run for exercise, fun, and competition, though I do trail races much more than road races. I enjoy spending any free time outside, including running, hiking, biking, skiing, and even walking with our dogs."