Cancer – Sneed, Wing, and Me

In January 2010, I was diagnosed with Multi Nodular Goiter and Thyroid Cancer. By February 9, 2010, I was wheeled into the operating room so a surgeon at St. John’s Medical Center could perform a Total Thyroidectomy.

I hadn’t felt very well for several months and my running times suffered. From running track at the National Senior Olympics to the Zoo Run, Tulsa Run, and the Route 66 Half Marathon I knew something was wrong. I felt sick after each run and I literally thought I was dying after running the Tulsa Run. But the thing about it was the fact that I had no idea what was wrong with me.

Many well-meaning runners told me it was dehydration and to drink more water. If they knew how much water I drink, they wouldn’t have told me that. My doctor told me I drank too much water and to drink things such as apple juice and sports drinks, but to quit drinking plain water.

Anyway, by January 2010, I was told that I have cancer of the Thyroid Gland with three cancerous nodules and one non-cancerous nodule. I was told that the cancerous nodules had several cancer markers including calcification, shadows, and halos.

After removal of the thyroid gland (Total Thyroidectomy), the report came back from pathology that it was not cancer. I’m Cancer Free!

Hallelujah! I jumped for joy. I was relieved and overwhelmed with emotion. The report made me happy.

But today I cry. Not for myself, but for Pam Sneed and Jack Wing. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I’ve been spared from the throws of cancer and here are two others from the running community who weren’t so blessed. I’m blessed beyond measure and I remember to count my blessings daily.

I did not know that Pam passed away until today. And I didn’t know that Jack Wing was battling cancer until today.

My health is bouncing back and I feel like I’m ready to run a small 5K race. I went online to register for the Wish Lemons 5K. That is when I ran across an article about Pam passing from this life to the next from gall bladder cancer on Wednesday, February 17, 2010.

I have a photo that I took of Pam at the Route 66 Marathon in 2006. I’ll hunt for it and post it as soon as I locate it.

I noticed Jack wasn’t announcing at a couple races at the end of 2009 and he was missed. I wondered at that time if anything was wrong. I had no idea that he has multiple myeloma. I’ve never heard anyone speak of it. And, at the time I noticed he wasn’t there, I was battling my own health problems.

I knew Pam was battling cancer, but I had no clue about Jack.

I was looking for more info about Pam and that’s when I came across the Tulsa World Articles about Jack undergoing Chemo-Therapy and Radiation. Those articles were in the newspaper on January 20th and 21st, 2010.

It was right about the time that Jack was in the hospital and Pam passed away in Jan 2010 that I was told that I have cancer.

My heart and prayers go out for Jack Wing. Hey Jack, take lots of Vitamin D, but mention it to your doctor first. It will help strengthen those bones. I’ll be praying that you’ll actually be strong enough to compete at the wheel chair races as is your goal. Know that you are loved by everyone from the running circuit.

Pam was 54 years old and Jack is age 66.


One thought on “Cancer – Sneed, Wing, and Me

  1. marela526 says:

    I am Pam’s youngest sister (she had 9 siblings). I still can’t believe she’s gone from our lives. I cry every night and miss her so very much. The memorial service was very touching but was the most painful thing I have ever been through. I had a hard time leaving her casket.

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