Donald Robert Anderson was born April 14, 1950 to Muriel and Clifton Anderson, at the historic Freedman’s Hospital in Washington, DC. He was the 3rd of 6 children. He was a beloved son, brother, husband, father of 3, a grandfather of 3 and uncle to his family.
He was a well accomplished, educated man, who took care of his health. Nonetheless, his journey battling Leiomyosarcoma began in 2014 with a misdiagnosis & treatment for a blood clot for 18 months by his cardiologist. Thanks to the attentiveness of the RT doing his CT scans who urged him to follow up with his doctor since the “blood clot” was growing. He finally received an accurate stage 4 cancer diagnosis October 16, 2016.
With his faith in God and a strong-willed mindset, the 4 of us went to war on this ugly disease as a family. 8 yrs ago, He was initially given 6 months to live, he requested that we keep his diagnosis private as, we supported him while he did everything possible to prolong his life.
LMS is a rare cancer only 1% of the population gets diagnosed, so treatments are limited, but ,very harsh on the body. Still Dad took every treatment available to buy more time with his family—It was his labor of love. Between 2016 and 2021, he endured 8 rounds total of different Chemo treatments lasting up to 3—5 months each; 30 consecutive days of radiation and surgery to remove the initial tumor. His tolerance of the treatments astounded his oncologist. She was amazed that he survived the treatments or that his immune system would recover as strongly after the treatments time and again.
Dr. Klass would always say Dad was tough as nails! However, after 13 months, in 2018 the LMS metastasized to his lungs and abdomen but this normally very aggressive sarcoma was progressing very slowly by God’s grace. Dad was a Warrior, he withstood the pandemic with no treatment and recovered from Covid-19. Again, his oncologist was baffled to see him alive when we scheduled a follow up appointment post-pandemic to resume chemo treatment.
Dad’s tolerance for pain was unmatched, he preferred to take two 325 mg Tylenol over the prescribed Oxycodone and never gave up hope on finding a cure for LMS. He was a favorite patient each time we went to the oncologist & the hospital.
My Daddy is truly the picture of strength, courage and faith. The week of October 5th, he decided that his fight was coming to an end and he started trying to prepare us for his transition. The entire time we were taking care of him, he never stopped taking care of us. He understood that God had carried him this far and spoke often of how grateful he was for all the love, help, care and support he received. He was so proud of his family. He was so grateful for his friends, his nurses and neighbors for the love and care everyone gave him on his journey.
We are so proud of our Dad for his valiant fignt against this viscous disease. Rest well our LMS Angel….We will continue the fight to find a cure in your honor.