Monday, June 13, 2005
Dear KCAC/KDKB Friends,
Many of you probably know Lissa Wales (pictured above), well known for her gig as a leading photographer for the percussion industry. She is well loved in the music world. Lissa's musical path crossed with Bill Compton's. They were dear friends and she told me that Bill's effect on her life was profound. He had an unselfish and helping heart. And I'm sure Bill would want us to know that Lissa is battling for her life.
Lissa was diagnosed with Leukemia in early 2004 and has undergone extensive chemotherapy, radiation and a bone marrow transplant. From September 2004 through March 2005 she was cancer free, busy, involved with her photo career nationally and internationally, looking and feeling great!! But routine tests in March '05 showed her cancer had returned and invaded 30% of her bone marrow.
Lissa had already offered to donate her services to shoot the April 17th AZ Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame Induction Awards. Positive 'superwoman' that she is, she went ahead and photographed the event even though her blood count was very seriously abnormal. Medically there was no way she should have even been able to walk. But she did it (and did a beautiful job.)
Hospitalization and a more radical form of chemo began days after the April 17th event. Then a June 7th bone marrow biopsy revealed the cancer had now invaded 60% of her bone marrow. Currently Lissa's having more chemo. On June 30th she'll undergo another bone marrow transplant and be hospitalized for ten weeks. After the transplant her doctor said she will not be allowed to work for up to a year. Lissa is counting on our positive, healing thoughts and prayers to help her do so well with the transplant she'll be able to get back to her work (and the friends she misses) much more quickly and leave cancer behind for good!
I told Lissa about a website called Caring Bridge where I wanted to create a web page for her. She said 'go for it!' Lissa's Caring Bridge site is available anytime so you can stay in touch and informed; it's free and easy to use. Lissa's web site is here. There you can read updates about her treatment progress and send your wishes, healing thoughts and prayers.
Lissa wears a brave face and has a great sense of humor but she needs us. Lissa often says she doesn't want to "be a burden to anyone." The Caring Bridge site was created so we can let her know that we're thinking of her, we care and are here for her...so she doesn't have to ask. (o: Her Caring Bridge page will provide a place for the many people here and abroad who love her to learn what's going on in her treatment, to communicate with her and her family, and most of all, to tell her we love her and know she WILL make it through this struggle.
Radio Free Phoenix (firstname.lastname@example.org)