Karen Black Battles Cancer With Help From Crowdfunding

Actress Karen Black is crowdfunding her battle with cancer.

The Five Easy Pieces and Burnt Offerings actress was diagnosed with cancer roughly two years ago. The actress is hoping to raise enough money to seek treatment overseas.

Karen Black was first diagnosed with ampullary cancer back in 2000. After undergoing surgery and chemotherapy, she was given a clean bill of health in 2011. Sadly, doctors informed her that the cancer returned last year.

Stephen Eckelberry, the actress’ husband, is hoping to raise around $22,000 to send Black overseas for treatment. Since insurance won’t cover her trip abroad, the 73-year-old actress has turned to her fans for support.

Although doctors in Los Angeles suggested another round of chemotherapy, Eckelberry said on the GoFundMe page that Karen Black is simply too sick to go through with the process. The actress currently weighs only 96 pounds. Ecklelberry added that she is mostly bed-ridden these days.

Since most people would balk at giving an actor or actress money, Eckelberry explained Black’s situation on the crowdfunding website.

“Yes, she was an actress in movies, but most of the high-paying work dwindled out many years ago. She has a modest pension and medical insurance (thank goodness), but as anyone knows who has fought cancer, that is not enough,” he explained.

Her husband added, “In the last two years we have used up all of our savings keeping Karen alive — traveling — treatments, getting people to help her. We have nothing left. And the European treatment is not covered by insurance.”

Eckelberry said they are hoping to get Black to Europe within the next few weeks. He’s worried that she may not be able to make the trip if they wait too long.

Born Karen Blanche Ziegler, the actress landed her first role in the 1959 flick The Prime Time. After appearing in a handful of television shows during the 60s, Black was cast in Dennis Hopper’s Easy Rider. She would later star opposite Jack Nicholson in Bob Rafelson’s 1970 drama Five Easy Pieces.

Karen Black is also known by fans for her turn in a number of memorable horror movies. The actress appeared in Burnt Offerings, Trilogy of Terror, Invaders from Mars, and writer-director Rob Zombie’s House of 1000 Corpses.

To learn more about how you can donate money for Karen Black’s cancer treatment, stop by her GoFundMe page.

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