When Danny was sick, he received a curious book from a friend. It was titled: “Cancer on $5 a Day* *(chemo not included): How Humor Got Me Through the Toughest Journey of My Life.”
“What a crass title,” I thought. But, being an avid reader and with nothing but time on his hands, Danny dove into it right away. From time to time, he would share the author’s amazing story and insights with a humorous twist about his battle with Danny’s same foe: Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.
That book lifted Danny’s spirits and gave him fresh perspective on a daily basis. When he was finished with it, he passed it on to another friend who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma shortly thereafter.
The author of the book, Robert Schimmel, was a talented and successful stand-up comic; a frequent guest on the Howard Stern radio show. He had landed his own TV show on Fox when he was diagnosed with cancer. The show was canceled so he could start chemo right away. The son of Holocaust survivors, Schimmel was no stranger to difficulties. He had lived through a heart attack, married and divorced the same woman three times and lost his 4-year-old son to cancer all before being diagnosed himself.
Robert Schimmel, 60, died September 3rd in Phoenix after suffering serious injuries from a car crash on August 26th while his 19-year-old daughter was driving.
I was recently asked to share our journey on The Denver Post’s Mile High Mamas. It was published yesterday as Mr. Schimmel was being laid to rest. For making a difference in Danny’s fight and that of countless others, I wish to dedicate that post to Mr. Schimmel.
Godspeed, Mr. Schimmel.