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Cancer Survivor Stories

  • Posted: 07/25/2011

Gary Johnson


A continuing adventure

Gary Johnson Gary Johnson

When Gary Johnson went in for surgery to remove a cancerous prostate, doctors discovered that the cancer had already spread to his lymph nodes. Now he's on a treatment that is designed to hold the cancer cells in check for as long as possible. "Since there's no cure for my cancer, my challenge is to live as long and as well as I can," says Gary.

Unwilling to sit back and worry, he and his wife Marlys focus on being proactive in facing down the disease. They have gathered a team of medical professionals, family, friends, and other cancer survivors as a support system. Gary has also changed his lifestyle—he's getting more exercise, getting better nutrition, and finding ways to manage his stress.

My challenge
is to live as long
and as well as I can.

Gary's cancer diagnosis completely changed the priorities in his life. He's now focused on family, faith, and the outdoors. He and Marlys established the 501(c)(3) non-profit Cancer Adventures, and travel across the United States, telling their story to cancer survivors, students, and health professionals.

"Not knowing what the future holds is the hardest part," Gary said recently. "The three things getting me through every day are my faith, my wife, and having this purpose to help others. Having a purpose has turned a negative into a positive."



The story on this page was first featured in the book Cancer Adventures, by Marlys Johnson (Copyright © 2008 by Marlys Johnson). Both the story and the photograph are owned by the author and the survivor and are used with permission.