The world was dismayed at the death of the actress and singer Olivia Newton-John at 73 years. Newton-John had been battling breast cancer for the past 30 years, and the star worked tirelessly to fund research in hopes of finding a cure.
“Olivia was a symbol of triumph and hope… shared her journey with breast cancer”
Newton-John’s legacy is remembered by many around the world as we mourn her death. “Olivia has been a symbol of triumph and hope for over 30 years by sharing her journey with breast cancer.” John Easterling, her husband, wrote. “Her healing inspiration and pioneering experience with plant medicines continues with the Olivia Newton-John Foundation Fund dedicated to research into plant medicines and cancer.”
Newton-John was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992, the same week her father died. After a partial mastectomy, nine months of chemotherapy, and breast reconstruction surgery, she recovered. It was at this point that Newton-John began searching for a cure for the disease.
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The singer donated proceeds from album sales to breast cancer research organizations such as the Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization. Newton-John also became a spokesperson for the Liv-Kit, a breast self-examination kit.
Your research institute and wellness center
In 2012, Newton-John opened the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute in Melbourne, Australia. Tragically, Newton-John’s breast cancer returned just a year later. Newton-John went back into remission but was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer in 2017. This time the cancer had metastasized to her lower back.
Meanwhile, Newton-John continued her work in cancer research. In 2015, the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute partnered with a local hospital to open the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research Center.
“When you get a cancer diagnosis, or a scary honest diagnosis, you suddenly have the option of a time limit.” she said 60 minutes Australia. “If someone tells you, ‘You have six months to live,’ you’re probably doing it because you believe it. Psychologically, I’m better off not having any idea of what to expect or what the last person you experienced was like, so I don’t intervene.
Newton-John’s support of herbal treatments
Newton-John also researched plant-based treatments and encouraged the medical community to take cannabis and other medicinal plants seriously. “People have this ’60s vision of people just sitting around and getting stoned,” she said today in 2017. “That’s not what it is about. This plant is a medicinal plant. I think we need to change the vision of what it is because it has helped me a lot and it helps with pain and inflammation.”
Newton-John will be remembered for her work on stage and screen, and for her relentless pursuit of a cure for cancer. You can donate to the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute by following this link.
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