Though it was a sunny day outside, inside 60 year old Ron Alexander was bed-bound and struggling to fight off pain and fatigue. His wife Judy Alexander said she thought he was feeling ill because he did not drink enough water.
"We thought it was dehydration."
After a blood test doctors discovered a serious problem. He went to a specialist for a bone marrow, the spongy part where blood cells form, sample and it was a clear diagnosis: Leukemia.
"We were completely shocked..blown away," said Judy.
He moved to Longville to be near the lake and fish every week. Since the diagnosis his fishing pool sits dusty on the side of the porch.
"Before he got sick he would work in the yard," said Judy.
"I can't even go outside," said Ron.
"He was a big person. He weighed 214 now we're lucky if he weighs 160...that's doing good," continued Judy.
They traveled to Houston for treatment, but Ron said he could not stand being separated from his family.
"He couldn't touch me or his children or grandchildren and he didn't want to live like that," explained Judy.
"I said no I'm going home," said Ron.
He is home now surrounded by pictures of his four children and nine grandchildren and in some ways, Judy said, it was a blessing.
"I hate for him to be this way, but at least had time to talk to his brothers and sisters and kids and let know how much he loves them," said Judy.
Ron said even with medicines he is in a lot of pain, but takes on a new battle everyday.
The family has set up a bank account for medical expense. To donate you can go to Iberia Bank and ask to deposit in Ronald Alexander's account.
According to Judy Alexander, Ronald Alexander died in the early hours October 11, 2011 from the disease. For memorial and visitation information contact Labby's Funeral Home in Deridder. The family is still taking donations in the account listed above for funeral arrangement expenses.
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