Michigan doctor with cancer planned own death, ‘shocked’ to be alive

Detroit Free Press 21 October 2018
Family First Comment:  “Randy Hillard has travelled more in the past eight years than he has his entire life. South America. Dubai. Singapore. Sydney. But if he went through with his plan to go to Switzerland in 2010, those trips wouldn’t have happened. That’s because eight years ago, Hillard was determined to kill himself through an assisted-suicide organization overseas.” 
#rejectassistedsuicide 
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Randy Hillard has traveled more in the past eight years than he has his entire life.

South America. Dubai. Singapore. Sydney.

But if he went through with his plan to go to Switzerland in 2010, those trips wouldn’t have happened. That’s because eight years ago, Hillard was determined to kill himself through an assisted-suicide organization overseas.

He was diagnosed with stage 4 stomach cancer just a few months before he went on a quest to kill himself. He suddenly realized he had become obsessive when he began planning his funeral.

“It was one rather pathetic way of asserting some control over my life,” said Hillard. “Cancer was going to kill me, and I did not intend to die yet.”

Hillard abandoned the idea after he heard about a drug called Herceptin. His oncologist at University of Michigan’s Rogel Cancer Center suggested he give it a try.

Back in 2010, the drug had just recently been approved for stomach cancer patients and promised a slightly longer life expectancy — 11 to 13 months longer. It was a long shot: Only 20 percent of cancer patients have the HER-2 protein surrounding the cancer cell targeted by the drug.

Hillard’s metastatic tumors had that specific protein. And eight years later, it still puzzles him … well, the statistics do. Stomach cancer at his stage has an 18-percent survival rate, and, not to mention, is one of the most uncommon cancers in America.

“I wake up every day shocked at how non-dead I am,” he said.
https://www.freep.com/story/life/2018/10/21/stage-4-stomach-cancer-randy-hillard-michigan/1674173002/

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