WEEI>On Demand>>Big Show: Jack Whalen

Big Show: Jack Whalen

Aug 21, 2012|

Jack Whelan, a 64-year-old blood cancer survivor, is the final guest with Glenn and Michael and talks about his six-year battle with the disease and balancing it a family with three children. He also discusses early memories of the Jimmy Fund from his father and how the charity has had a presence for generations.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

I'm Michael and I've said this numerous times it is so great doing this Jimmy Fund radio telephone on year after year to see people come back and visit us again. Because it means it's working it means it's showing the success of the Jimmy from program the Dana Farber. Program and how people are getting healthier because of the clinical trials in the research and all of the money. That people like you -- listening to a separates. This next guest -- Jack -- was what this last year. It's no coincidence that will be beginning Red Sox baseball at 619 and they put Jack on -- 609. They hit ten minutes because you can throw one question Jack's got a -- for about fifteen. I mean it's a Mohawk it's great seeing you mentality. You putted very nice to be seen as soon dramatic that's not reviewed this day -- matters I area. What -- more along with the guy I bet my life is it going I. I suppose that's an ideologue where do I sort of like -- you think you have to will get no word in edgewise with Jack Johnson's chip on our best -- First of all let me just say you look great thank you look great you -- -- You don't feel good on wonderful and it -- there's not a new idea of a blood cancer right. That's right am -- dealing with this for about six years now and among my fourth clinical trial and this one seems to be working very good and -- off of it right now for a little break it just came off of it for about a month. Things are good and now the best I've felt in a long time -- It's a big win for earth for everybody. How -- house the last year been for you mean since we saw saw you last what's been happening with heads and -- it's been mostly good. But there's some little warnings along the way that just kind of caption on this shoulder this is a it's not quite over yet so but overall very good things are things are good it's -- the therapy at the targeted therapy that. Has been developed over the last couple years and it's blood cancers -- tough ones to me because it's in your bone marrow so that type of chemo that they're giving a very targeted. Molecular level that -- into the bone marrow and so. For me it's working it's a clinical trial of or about twelve of us that are on it how often you have to to go with 33 tells a week and it's actually not even an infusion to pill -- so. That's pretty exciting fact that you don't have to sit in these fusion chair for a few hassles. He's a novel agents are really working well for people. I apologize we should mention Mikey Adams is soliciting him with a secure about maybe I'll be you know -- I was gonna say yeah. You don't want that you were provenance early -- -- -- a ball over the -- when you're doing this shift which got her normal shift -- I like to work well twelve manager -- I was just get more current that you -- like today. And then you're on after the game yes. You getting time and a half because his decision on knowledge of all I bonus amount to little outside help. Dressing Presley Michael and I help him out what its -- if he's got a TV is -- all over the globe Providence involved. Hot hot hot power hungry people than what's there -- really came back and he's at home or I'm sure we. Don't worry what should give me back. A long while to get kidnapped exploit these. Clinical trials because -- an awful lot about them so if you're a clinical trial you're taking. But drug that the FDA is not necessarily approved yet so you're getting something that they've tried on the rats are Guinea pigs or something that I has been relatively successful. Yeah and they think it will work we're with you Ryan. -- I'm careful with that rat analogy here there -- -- it's not that many just people -- with me right there no it's actually. Tom does a lot of myths and misconceptions about clinical trials they're not a scary and they're not as risky as they sound nor are they only used for people. Who are desperate you know it is sometimes you very clinical trial is just for somebody who had repeated or relapse free fracturing type of -- cancer com. Because they're not they're actually well tested at a time. There's a lot of discipline before the clinical trial. -- comes to market there's a a lot of work that's happening actually I think with a clinical trial I get much better care than traditional chemo because it's a forward looking. Type of came around of them looking at. Vicki miles what had historically that tend to really beat you up these novel agents these new things that they're testing I think there's actually less risk. For me because again I have a cancer that's not curable. If I was curable if there was something we could use to take than the risk would be better balance but in this case. I'm looking for effects I'm looking to get something to it. To make the cancer goal way and what we're finding we haven't found that yet but we're finding certain agents that can help manages to the extend life so that's. That's a fact and do one or two years at a time when I was first diagnosed. Everything that was in the literature said he had about five years which is enough to scare anybody sure but when you look forward and say well look the work that's being done. With a forward looking look there's a there's a chance that you'll be that I have. They're looking at five years from that technology that all that's exact -- according to the five years or restaurants -- the extension because they're coming up what exactly right now trying to make you think anything of it has to do it through the spirit of the page that you know that the there will. Patient of the overall to tell -- I'm going to be there that's it that's a good question when I I don't know that it is the spirit and the will I think. Because it does there many people have very good spirit and goodwill but don't make it run but I think if you have a good spirit. You -- -- aren't right keep her. Saint -- can't hurt it can't hurt at every attempt to make smarter decisions you're more. In tune with -- wrong care sort of like driving up our cars you're familiar with the clicking Sondra banging sound. You know that he needs to get fixed. Look at the right spirit and attitude about your cancer and dealing with that you'll tend to do the right things -- report to your physician or your doctor oncologists. What's going on you tend to be a little bit smile still on top of if you have a good attitude but. But I don't buy that attitude keeps you or extend your life because it's too many really good people that have had a great attitude right up to the nearly eleven dollar. Sure great attitude and in great care is all well -- exactly a good thing now is gonna going to be around for gonna wedding coming up than the Israeli right. -- zone how my middle daughter and three weeks he's gonna get married my futures on the Blogosphere and wanted to ask you couples they aren't yeah. Had given him any advice yet it has anything. I don't worry be happy. Good advice for the guys. You seem to like him here he's -- -- -- I'm -- saying things -- -- -- -- -- decision. Hey Michael. We're we're we're gonna help him. Does. It tell the truth I don't think our our radar -- that I -- reverend dollars I was gonna say that a you don't actually know -- good -- -- -- great sons and lied to him no complaints. I had when I first met him I have what's called a ninety day rule for the first ninety days I don't wanna know you I don't want to talk to become real and then you find out. I will respect guy he was a great Red Sox fan I caught that guy -- an inning he goes away but no we're very lucky I got the. Save room and ask -- and search that was your routine right now what you have to do you said you've you've backed off of everything differently -- tocchet to back off right right there's stuff on there can be some toxic effects from this particular one. There's some pulmonary issues and your lungs and I've been dealing with something called -- ideas which is sort of a pneumonia and it kind of comes and goes so. We just said let's back offer for a little while we may move onto to another type of agent is to see what works. I know when you realize do we get into the whole conversation you were talking about believe it was your dad that was heavily involved and active and -- so we are talking about the little tin cans of yes yeah the movie betterment of the -- they've got a good memory and I'm not hurry several years should there is a kid you want the movie to start that some kids going up and coming out this group yeah. And yet it was almost looked like about that all those little tin cans that you put that money and yet that is ended up helping you along the line you're absolutely right plan now that hole. Fund raising people out there Jimmy Fund -- then just as you mention my dad had boxes of those in my brother and I would go around of the movie theaters though. Little League game reverend you pass it can't. And everybody reached in whether -- two pennies a fifteen cents or whatever the interesting thing is that generation as I said last year. Paid the price of some of the benefits we're seeing this generation so. You know it's it's -- an opportunity here to appeal to people a sense. Step up now because it may affect you you you heard that one in three people are affected directly by cancer -- way the other sort. If you pay today it is a good chance it may be an investment for yourself or your family are our friends so. -- yeah that's a great point did you ever have a great point about everybody pitching and whether it was a few pennies or fewer dollars -- to tell people all day today. And we have the Commissioner of Baseball coming on tomorrow and usually gives a very sizable check we've got Donald Trump come on in this. He's got more money in god and he's given a lot of money but you can give five dollars ten dollars 25 dollars and that will contributed a total as well everybody can. Just understand the -- beautiful thing ten dollars and text take cancer. Text to 20222. Very good is a wonderful way to get it done. And by the way at all one word -- one worked K cancer 22 to two K cancer 2222. You donate ten bucks. AT&T won't match your first five checks that you can keep until ten bucks each time automatically will take ten. And then if you do it five times AT&T won't match -- -- another fifty bucks and it's a perfect way so this time I was not ten times faster it's. It's my drives have gotten -- -- times Garnett that's very it's still not confident that pop up at the end of the and of course this. The old fashioned 18777381234. That's 8777381234. And then of course you can go online Jimmy Fund dot org you can go to WT GI dot com slash Jimmy Fund their a lot of different ways that you can contribute. But we need people to pick up the phone exactly what you said the old tin can right now what ever you can afford to get. We need to check there's no question about definitely and it's the clinical trials the research I mean looking forward talking to the doctors today. The next five years we might see some drama just looking at the last five years sure we were five years are curious from like 07 have been. -- that determines manageable let's if there's not a cure at least it can be managed and now that's one of the benefits of these new agents that are being developed -- But maybe it maybe the recession gets arrested -- yeah managed we've made some decisions over the last few days we won't talk about hello -- will fire its hmmm -- well -- -- -- -- 484 team you know you guys don't have to have that are hard job for me. How do you get excited on the -- will be worse like historically it's like play itself or else. If they're -- dealt. Bill Clinton's original intent and rolling get right it -- -- haven't reached I know it's mathematically still possible and -- -- playing their competition coming -- like this is like -- fifth -- -- references to any -- in the last fifteen under Providence I think she's gonna get scared now. I don't know -- -- not scary it is his picture taken with a -- outside I didn't know it. I think there's just a matter apps unless it is right there if there once I get a Photoshop I didn't detonate and I think Jack is healthy I don't. I know exactly right now I don't. That's way to do -- the throw I used to sit in the infusion chair. And while there weren't doing -- the -- I would hide it and say. I was the pizza delivery guy I'm really not that right I'm not -- you guys if I'm just -- the troops. We get ever wrap things up we get you to the end Jack thank you we're going to party with you right now kind of found a very big guys you know thank you straight CR it's good positive that -- -- greater. And your family and friends and everybody here it's a lovely San thank you. On behalf of every cancer patient everywhere it thank you three guys which you do this is really important stuff.

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