If there is anything that can be said about Congressman John Lewis (D-GA) is that he has been a fighter his entire life. The civil rights icon was beaten brutally on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in what is now known as Bloody Sunday during the Civil Rights Era. He was aligned with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr during that historic fight for equality, and went on to serve in elected office. Congressman Lewis is now in what could shape up to be the fight of his life. On Sunday night, the 79-year-old announced that he has been diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer.
Of the diagnosis, Rep. Lewis said:
“I have been in some kind of fight — for freedom, equality, basic human rights — for nearly my entire life. I have never faced a fight quite like the one I have now.”
“While I am clear-eyed about the prognosis, doctors have told me that recent medical advances have made this type of cancer treatable in many cases, that treatment options are no longer as debilitating as they once were, and that I have a fighting chance.”
Despite this grim diagnosis, Rep. Lewis says he is determined to continue doing the work he has done his entire life:
“I may miss a few votes during this period, but with God’s grace I will be back on the front lines soon.”
Godspeed, Congressman. We need you. You have been the representative of your district since 1986. We know you’ll be around another good long while.
Congressman Lewis received well wishes from many colleagues and political high fliers, including former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, President Barack Obama, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
We will keep this developing story updated.