Rob was diagnosed with
non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 1999
The image of a lighthouse is emblazoned in my mind on the day (in 1999)
my husband Rob found out he had lymphoma. I suppose the doctor
had placed that picture on the wall as a beacon of hope, but all I could
see were the waves crashing around the rocks below – it did not inspire
confidence – only terror. Rob was diagnosed as having stage IV non-
Hodgkin T-cell lymphoma, CD30 ALK-positive. This was after many
visits to our GP for what seemed like the flu. Before this, Rob appeared
to be healthy. He was a runner, enjoyed skiing and many other physical
activities. Rob had a fast-paced, demanding job in a graphics and photo
department at a local paper. He was 43 years old.
We asked to be referred to the supportive and informative team at the
Cancer Agency who helped us successfully fight what we thought was Rob’s
one and only brush with death. The victory lasted four years. Rob relapsed
The first time you hear a loved one has cancer you think it is the worst day of your life. The second time it
is infinitely more terrifying because you know what you are up against and you barely had time to recover
from the last battle.
Rob was told that this time he needed a stem cell transplant and we were transferred to the wonderful Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplant team at VGH. . . .