Cancer Returns For Phil Leadbetter!

Image635722793786407306He's been pronounced "Cancer-Free" twice in the last four years but now, Doctors have told award-winning dobro player, Phil Leadbetter that he'll be fighting the battle once more.

Phil wrote on his page two days ago:

"After a PET scan and biopsy, it looks like my cancer has returned. We have been hitting it really hard for 4 years now, and it seems to be getting more stubborn. I have been feeling pretty good, so I'm really surprised with my results. Appointment at Vanderbilt next week to make a new plan. I continue to believe that God has a plan for me, or I would have been gone long ago. Again, asking for prayers......... especially for Lisa, Matt and the rest if my family. Thank you !"

Yesterday he wrote:

"Me and Lisa had a really good day just driving the back roads and checking out little antique shops. Never once talked about cancer. Illness only controls your life if you allow it to. Today we left it at home."

Phil & Lisa LeadbetterThroughout the on-again, off-again battle, Phil has continued to show an upbeat and positive face to his friends and fans and as he said in his announcement of the return, he has always thought of others who are around him and how they are affected.

We first reported back in March of 2011 that Phil was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma,  a cancer of lymph tissue found in the lymph nodes, spleen, liver, bone marrow, and other sites.

In the beginning all of the news seemed to be positive with good progress reports but there were mountains of medical bills.   Phil, being a full time, self-employed musician, had no medical insurance but fans and fellow musicians rallied numerous times with benefit concerts to raise funds.  Even Pinecastle Records stepped up to offer a Phil Leadbetter package of 4 CDs with all proceeds going to the fund to help Phil’s expenses. 

But the news wasn’t always so up-beat and Phil’s particular strain of cancer stubbornly wanted to win the battle. Through it all, his family, friends and fans never stopped the prayers and best wishes.  Most importantly, Phil never gave in. 

In 2005 he was voted International Bluegrass Music Association "Dobro Player Of The Year" (an honor that was bestowed upon him again in 2014).

In 2005 he also won "Instrumental Album Of The Year" for his CD "Slide Effects" from the IBMA. His song "California Cotton Fields" held the #1 spot on the National Bluegrass Chart for two consecutive months in 2005.

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