Rolling Stones’ Ronnie Wood revealed he was ready to say goodbye to his family after being diagnosed with cancer earlier this year. The 70-year-old opened up about his terrifying health scare in a recent interview with Mail on Sunday’s Event Magazine, saying he thought his life might be over.
“I’ve had a fight with a touch of lung cancer. There was a week when everything hung in the balance and it could have been curtains — time to say goodbye.”
But luckily for Wood, doctors were able to catch and treat his cancer early. It was during a routine medical check up with the band’s doctor, Richard Dawood, that led to the discovery of the tumor. Three months ago, ahead of Rolling Stones’ upcoming European tour, Wood’s physician asked him if he could “go deeper” in order to check out his heart, lungs, and blood.
Unfortunately, the results revealed that he had, what Wood referred to as, “this supernova” burning away on his left lung. The famous guitarist admitted that he wasn’t surprised doctors found something since he hadn’t had a chest X-ray since 2002. Also, considering that he was a chain smoker for more than 50 years, he was lucky the cancer was even treatable.
Wood, who quit smoking before his one-year-old twin daughters Gracie and Alice were born in May 2016, knew what he needed to do following his diagnosis. He wanted the disease out of his body, so Wood underwent a five-hour operation to remove part of his lung.
Luckily, the cancer had not spread to any other organs. But had the disease spread, Wood admitted that he would not have gone through chemotherapy. Why? Well, because his hair is too important to him. He literally could not bear losing his iconic hair.
He and his wife, Sally Humphreys, didn’t tell anyone about his diagnosis because they didn’t want anyone else to go through the “hell” they were going through at the time. Now that he’s cancer-free, Wood knows how lucky he is to have survived this health scare.
“I’m OK now. But I’m going to have a check-up every three months. I was bloody lucky but then I’ve always had a very strong guardian angel looking out for me. By rights, I shouldn’t be here.”
Hours after the interview was published, Wood thanked his fans for all the support.
Thank you for all your words of support today ~ I'm feeling great and ready to see you on the road next month ????????????????https://t.co/qYMWrGpzpp
— Ronnie Wood (@ronniewood) August 6, 2017
The Rolling Stones’ upcoming No Filter European tour dates are below.
9 September – Hamburg, Germany: Stadtpark
12 September – Munich, Germany: Olympic Stadium
16 September – Spielberg, Austria: Spielberg at Red Bull Ring
20 September – Zurich, Switzerland: Letzigrund Stadium
23 September – Lucca, Italy: Lucca Summer Festival-City Walls
27 September – Barcelona, Spain: Olympic Stadium
30 September – Amsterdam, Holland: Amsterdam ArenA
3 October – Copenhagen, Denmark: Parken Stadium
9 October – Dusseldorf, Germany: Esprit Arena
12 October – Stockholm, Sweden: Friends Arena
15 October – Arnhem, Holland: GelreDome
19 October – Paris, France: U Arena
22 October – Paris, France: U Arena
Wood isn’t the first Rolling Stones member to be diagnosed with cancer. In March 2016, former bassist Bill Wyman announced he was battling prostate cancer and that he expected to make a full recovery.
[Featured Image by Victoria Will/AP Images]