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Margery - Lung Cancer

Margery - Lung Cancer

Margery Godfrey is a kick in the pants. She’s lively, speaks her mind, and is very funny. Even about her cancer. The 74-year-old with stage two lung cancer calls her radiation oncologist “eye candy.” She calls her Harvard- and Yale-trained doctors “the picks of the litter.” And even after seven weeks of five-days-a-week proton therapy, she’s starting back at Cross Fit classes and looking forward to continuing her volunteering with the Master Gardeners. 

That sense of energy and joie de vivre is hardly diminished after months of chemo and targeted radiation she’s undergone since her diagnosis in February.  She’s still in love with her husband, her childhood sweetheart.  She’s still grateful to her Federal Way friends for driving her to radiation treatments every week; and to the doctors and staff of SCCA Proton Therapy Center for the skill and friendship, and for, well, everything.

Her story is remarkable, and she’s the first to tell you she’s lucky to be here. In February, her sister became ill and died, and amid all the mourning and stress, Margery got bronchitis. Her doctor ordered a chest x-ray, and that’s when the tumor on her left lung was found… early enough to do something about it. Because Margery’s husband had previously had cancer and was treated at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Margery knew that’s where she would go, too. Treatment started in May, with chemo and proton therapy, which together offered as good a prognosis as surgery. As of mid-October, the tumor has shrunk substantially.

Said Margery, “We evaluated the options and because proton therapy is targeted and the radiation would not go through the tumor to damage other tissue, we decided that was the best way to go. I was impressed by what it offered regarding targeting the tumor with less collateral damage. It was a no-brainer.”

Margery found her treatment tiring, but always kept her spirits high. “They made it really convenient for me, giving me appointment times to avoid the traffic.” Like she does everywhere she goes, she made friends with others getting treatment at the center, including people who had traveled thousands of miles for proton therapy, since this is the only center offering proton therapy within a seven state area. 

Every day, Margery feels stronger, and she’s almost ready to engage again with her charitable causes, including EarthCorps, Fusion and Master Gardeners. “I don’t want to be just a taker. I want to put something back, and as long as I have a breath in my body, I want to leave the world a better place,” she says. 

Her advice to others? 

“Don’t give up hope. Trust in your great doctors.” Be like Margery and protons, always positive!