Redwood Falls Gazette
  • Bob's cancer miracle

  • On Jan. 6, 2011, Bob Wetmore was given three weeks to live; this coming Friday he will be the honorary chair of the Redwood County Relay for Life....
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  • Bob Wetmore knows about cancer firsthand, and he knows just how invaluable Relay For Life is for those who have had a similar experience. As honorary chair of Relay For Life 2014 (coming up at Gilfillan this Friday), Wetmore has an important message to share.
    Wetmore encouraged everyone to attend this year’s Relay For Life, which is being held Friday. “It was JoAnn (Dehncke) who got me involved with Relay For Life,” said Wetmore, adding he helped out with her team The Bobbers. “When I got cancer I became even more aware of what Relay For Life does.” It was Jan. 6, 2011 when Wetmore was diagnosed with what he said was Non-Hodgkins Big Cell Lymphoma. At first, based on what doctors were seeing, they diagnosed Wetmore with what is known as Burkitt lymphoma. “They gave me three weeks to live,” he said. Wetmore was sent on to Willmar for more tests and eventually ended up in the Twin Cities. “They opened me up, and I was full of cancer,” said Wetmore, adding he began to gain weight. “I really started to balloon up.” More tests ensued, and it was another doctor who changed the diagnosis to the Non-Hodgkins cancer. “In our eyes that was a miracle,” said Wetmore, adding he remembers very clearly the day he was told. “Up to that point they had me in isolation. Nobody could come in or out to prevent risk of infection.” With the new diagnosis, the prognosis was more positive, and Wetmore began chemotherapy treatments. According to Wetmore the treatments he received never really made him sick, but he did lose his hair. After his treatments were over, Wetmore was declared cancer free. That was three years ago. Once a year Wetmore goes to his physician for a checkup. “When you have been diagnosed with cancer in your life each time there is a new ailment you wonder in the back of your mind ‘is it cancer?’ When you are first diagnosed it really grabs your attention,” he said. Wetmore said he is proud to serve as the honorary chair for Relay For Life, and said he is looking forward to sharing Friday night. Since his diagnosis, Wetmore said he has a new outlook on life. “I believe God has another plan for me. That’s why I am still here,” said Wetmore. “There’s something else I’m supposed to accomplish.” Now retired, Wetmore is spending less time at the family business and is taking more time to enjoy life and his family. While the transition to the next generation operating the business came sooner than Wetmore initially anticipated, he is confident things are going to be just fine. Wetmore said he wants to spend more time serving, adding Relay For Life is one of those opportunities. He is looking forward to seeing everyone at Relay For Life later this week.
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