Dana Reeve, Chris’s Widow, Battling Lung Cancer

Dana Reeve, Chris Reeve’s widow, announced yesterday that she has lung cancer.

Reeve’s Widow Battling Lung Cancer (AP)

After helping her famous husband turn his paralysis into a gracefully productive last nine years, Dana Reeve is fighting for her own life with the resolve and optimism that have already attracted worldwide admiration. Christopher Reeve’s widow announced Tuesday that she has lung cancer, then quickly added: “I hope before too long to be sharing news of my good health and recovery.” “Now, more than ever, I feel Chris with me as I face this challenge,” said the 44-year-old actress. “As always, I look to him as the ultimate example of defying the odds with strength, courage, and hope.”

Christopher Reeve, the star of the “Superman” movies who was paralyzed in a horse-riding accident in 1995, died last year. The Reeves have a 13-year-old son, Will.

Dana Reeve, chairwoman of the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation, said Tuesday that her lung cancer was recently diagnosed and is being treated, but she did not reveal the extent of the cancer or her prognosis, except to say that she and her doctors were optimistic. She did not say where she is being treated. Dr. Scott Swanson, chief of thoracic surgery at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Manhattan, said that depending on the extent of the cancer, Reeve would be treated with surgery, chemotherapy, radiation or a combination. When cancer is confined to the lung, the survival rate after five years is 49 percent; but only 2 percent live five years if it has spread to other organs.

Though most victims of lung cancer are smokers, Reeve is not, said foundation spokeswoman Maggie Goldberg.

I hope they caught this in time.

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James Joyner
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  1. Meezer says:

    If she is a non-smoker, they probably did not. It is one of the ironies of life.

    If you do not smoke, you need a periodic x-ray more than those who do. Smokers have more and earlier symptoms of cancer.