By Rosemary Pollock
An LDS Man's Fight with Cancer
RICHLAND, WASHINGTON -- James Kane of Richland, Washington doesn't
believe that if you have your health you have everything. Kane claims
to have it all minus good health or the hope for it in the future.
The 45-year-old, former construction worker and engineer, husband and
father of four realized his dream Sunday when he lived to see
Father's Day. He wasn't sure he would make it that far last September.
"You've just got to live like you're going to have no today. You
don't have time for envy, jealousy or greed or any of the negative
emotions that poison your spirit," he said.
"Anything, an infection could snuff out my life. I have to take life
a day at a time. While I live, however, my boys need my influence,
especially," Kane said. "They are so impressionable. I'm not strong
enough to chase after them like I used to, but they need my help. I'm
going to be there for them just as long as I can."
Kane and his wife of 26 years, Lyn, adopted two sons from Romania,
Jonathon, 10, and Justin, 9. He's hoping to stay alive as long as he
can to be a good father while fighting for his life against cancer
that has spread to his lungs, lymph nodes and dangerously near his
remaining kidney. "It's still in there trying to whup me," Kane said.
Help and support come from the couple's two oldest daughter's, Amy
Hansen, 24, and Jennifer, 20 along with the family's strong faith in
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Hansen, a mom of two
helps whenever she can and Jennifer, who attends Columbia Basin
College, still lives at home with her parents where she can help care
for her dad, mom and brothers.
Mother, Lyn is bedridden with chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia and
interstitial cystitis. "It made us grow up fast. We spent a lot of
time playing back-up mom and dad and didn't go out every weekend like
our friends did. We even took the boys on (our) dates," Amy said.
At the young age of 23 Kane considered himself lucky when he lost the
sight in his right eye to cancer. It remained in remission for nearly
17 years and then reoccurred in 1995, when doctors discovered that
cancer had spread to his lungs, lymph nodes and kidney. A year ago
the doctors gave him only a month and a half to live.
"You don't know how many times they'd give me a month or two to live.
I've blown by all the predictions," Kane said. Last summer, Kane
spent two months in the hospital while visiting his mother in Idaho
Falls. Five hours of surgery repaired a bowel obstruction, but left
him with debilitating pain and an accident during surgery that
severed a nerve in his leg.
"I was paralyzed, almost dead in a bed in a strange town in Idaho. It
was the hardest operation of any of them I've gone through," Kane
said of his seven surgeries. "I wasn't expected to make it home. I
wasn't expected to be able to walk. It took me until almost January
before I could do anything. I got in this new house and couldn't do
anything," Kane said. A 40 pounds loss during his last hospital stay
left him using a walker and crutches and the constant fear of
infection threatens him everyday.
"I think even when things are going really bad, it keeps your focus,"
Jennifer said. "People need to be grateful for what they have. I want
people to realize how lucky they are to have their health and
families," Jennifer added.
Richland man fights cancer to surpass survival expectations
Richland WA Tri-City Herald 18Jun01 P2
By Kristina Lord: Herald staff writer