Make a Crucial Catch
When it comes to cancer, offense is the best defense.
Josephine's Story: Cancer Care
“Not my time to quit:” Josephine Anderson’s Crucial Catch
At 85, Josephine Anderson is older than many of those she helps as an in-home senior caregiver. She has energy to spare; when she’s not on her feet at her job, she’s cheering for the Seahawks, having lunch with friends, or crocheting colorful blankets for the homeless in her Port Orchard community. “I just get a good feeling knowing I can help someone who can’t help themselves,” she said.
Josephine hopes to live to 100, and has genetics on her side, she said. “I’m following in the footsteps of my father, who lived to be 101. My uncle lived to be 105.” Because she’d always been healthy and active, she didn’t suspect anything serious back in 2011 when she started coughing up blood on her drive home from work.
Thinking she’d caught a cold, Josephine decided to check in at a local urgent care clinic. When a chest X-ray revealed a concerning spot in her lung, Josephine was referred to CHI Franciscan oncologist Malcom Winter, MD, for a chest scan. Soon after, Josephine was diagnosed with lung cancer. Chemotherapy and radiation put the cancer into remission twice, she said, but each time, the cancer returned. “We’re now working on getting it into remission a third time,” she said.
Josephine’s CHI Franciscan care team have helped her navigate the ups and downs of an eight-year cancer battle with dedication and compassion, she said. “Dr. Winter, my surgeon Dr. Tcheng, and everyone at Northwest Medical Specialties has been excellent. I feel like they really care about me as a person, and they’re there for me.”
“I have to do what’s best for me, and that’s to keep going. I never stop. I never stop to think about the cancer or how much time I have left,” she said. ““My theory is that if you need to put everything you have into fighting cancer, this is the time you should do it. I just feel like it’s not my time to quit.”