The last time we posted about Marty Raybon’s young banjo picker Chris Wade, it was with sad and somewhat depressing news. The 24 year old student in the ETSU Bluegrass, Old Time & Country Music program had received a diagnosis of bone cancer back in September, along with news that he would have to undergo knee replacement surgery and a year of chemotherapy.
While Chris has kept a positive outlook since first receiving this news, his many friends in the music world have been worrying about his treatment and prognosis.
Well, there is very good news today on that front. Chris tells us that his doctor informed him this morning that, two weeks out from successful knee replacement, he shows a 99% cure rate. He is receiving chemo today and tomorrow, returning home on Saturday. Two more rounds will be scheduled, and he should be finished with the chemo by late January. Physical therapy and rehab would then start in February.
If all goes well with rehab, Chris hopes to finish his course requirements at ETSU during the summer semester, and graduate with a degree in business management (minor in bluegrass) shortly thereafter.
When sharing this news with us earlier today, Wade expressed gratitude for all the support he has received during this ordeal, from Raybon holding his job open, to all the phone calls, emails and texts of encouragement.
“I have gotten to play with Marty here a few times lately, when I’ve recovered a little from the chemo. I got to record with him about a month ago for his upcoming bluegrass CD, which was a lot of fun to do. He has really been a great friend through all of this.
I really appreciate all the supportive people in the bluegrass community. Marty has been over the top in all his encouragement and help. It has really encouraged me to have so many friends and heroes sending kind words my way.
You just can’t beat bluegrass”
What a wonderful Christmas present for Chris, his family, and his many friends.