Lung Cancer Can’t Quiet His Song
As a middle-school choral teacher and a man of deep faith, Damon Greene’s voice is his life and his livelihood. That made his diagnosis with Stage 3 lung cancer even more life-shattering.
“It’s how I worship, it’s how I make a living. I have to breathe in order to sing. The initial day when I was diagnosed—it was too big for me to handle.”
Following his diagnosis in November of 2017, Damon was referred to UK HealthCare’s Markey Cancer Center, where he met Dr. Susanne Arnold and nurse Rebecca Heichelbech. It was the beginning of a relationship that would outlast his treatment.
Damon became a well-loved figure during his time at Markey. “Damon is a huge personality,” said his nurse, Rebecca. “He always has a smile on his face, even when he’s afraid. Everybody in this clinic knows Damon, and when he walks in, everybody knows it’s going to be a great day.”
Despite his serious Stage 3 diagnosis, Damon stayed positive throughout his treatment. (“The only thing I worried about was losing my eyebrows,” he joked.) After more than a year of chemotherapy and radiation, he was declared cancer-free in January of 2019.
“The chemo and radiation have affected my voice, but I’m not going to let it stop me,” Damon said. “Because I’ve got a story to tell. I want to be a witness to others who may go through this.”
Despite Damon’s positive prognosis at the time this story was written, his cancer eventually returned. He passed away in April of 2020, leaving behind an immense legacy in the lives of his friends, family, colleagues, and, especially, his students.