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Jim King to undergo surgery for pancreatic cancer

by Dara Kam | May 29th, 2009

kingsSen. Jim King will undergo surgery to combat advanced pancreatic cancer, his wife Linda said in an e-mail today.

King, a Jacksonville Republican who served as Senate President and was first elected to the Florida House more than two decades ago, was diagnosed with cancer shortly after the legislative session ended earlier this month.

King was responsible for creating the James and Esther King Biomedical Research program, a grant program administered by the Department of Health named after his parents.

The surgeon who performed a biopsy and ultrasound on King received one of the grants, Linda King wrote.

“Together, we have decided on a course of treatment and will soon begin this journey. We have decided to take the surgical route since it offers, potentially, the best chance for a longer life. The surgery is very difficult, and the recovery even more so, but we have faced adversity before and won, and we have faith that we will this time as well,” Linda King wrote.

She also asked that well-wishers contact King or the family through his website, www.caringbridge.org/visit/senatorjimking.

Go to the jump to read the full text of Linda King’s message.

“Beloved friends and family:

Jim and I are truly overwhelmed by the outpouring of support, love and friendship we have received since Jim’s diagnosis. As you know, we recently returned from a week-long trip and are now back in Jacksonville, coming to terms with what the future will hold and how best to combat this disease. Together, we have decided on a course of treatment and will soon begin this journey. We have decided to take the surgical route since it offers, potentially, the best chance for a longer life. The surgery is very difficult, and the recovery even more so, but we have faced adversity before and won, and we have faith that we will this time as well. A date has not been set for the surgery, but it will be soon and will be at Mayo in Jacksonville.

Knowing that all of you have asked for updates on Jim’s treatment, we have asked longtime family friends Gus Corbella and Sarah Bascom to maintain Jim’s website at the Caringbridge.org. We kindly ask that you utilize this website to leave Jim and I your notes and well wishes, as the emails and phone calls have started to overwhelm Jim. If you sign up for the email journal updates, you will be notified when Jim’s surgery date is set and of the outcome of the surgery.

Jim has always lived his life in the public eye and has been very accessible but has asked that all emails and phones calls please be redirected to this site so that he can focus on his treatment and getting on with his life with our beloved family and friends.

Jim’s website can be accessed through www.caringbridge.org/visit/senatorjimking. You will be asked to create a profile and sign in.

Again, we thank you for honoring this request and for your continued love and friendship.

Linda King

P.S. – As a special side note, in case anybody needs proof that there are special forces in control of our lives, the surgeon that did the successful biopsy and ultrasound on Jim was himself a recipient of a grant from the James and Esther King Biomedical Research program.

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One Response to “Jim King to undergo surgery for pancreatic cancer”

  1. Linda B. King Says:

    We are now almost 12 days after surgery. Jim is doing better and better each and every day. We’re looking at a transitional rehab for him to get physical therapy and regain his strength before coming back home. Jim’s surgeon is closely monitoring his JP drain as fluid from his abdomen continues to flow from the body. Jim’s vitals are fine and he has no fever. The doctor may leave the drain in and dismiss Jim from the hospital soon. We’re looking forward to our next chapter in “healing”. Thank you all for your wonderful thoughts and prayers…they’ve certainly helped us with patience during this healling process.
    Linda B. King

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