Those of us who have been praying for Bob Baron to recover from his cancer must now change our prayers for his peaceful, painless and merciful passing. Tom Dixon phoned me today and said that Bob is back in the hospital, having never improved from his last session of treatments. He is in extreme pain, and the pain medications put him in limbo. When the medications are reduced, he is lucid, but cannot stand the pain. Apparently, the doctors have exhausted their arsenal of drugs, and no longer feel they can cure him. Bob has told them that he doesn't want to put up with it any more, and authorized them to let him go.
We don't have any time line for the next few weeks, but it is supposed to be less than one month. He will be moved from the hospital to a hospice facility, in order to be as comfortable as possible.
At this time, we don't know where cards could be sent, but as soon as we know anything, we'll spread the word.
For those of you who are surprised, Bob has been fighting the "hairy cell anemia", a bone marrow cancer for over 20 years, and has been near death on several occasions. Until recently most of his treatments have been either ill-conceived, or highly experimental. The last several series have done more harm than good, and it is clear that his body could stand no more punishment. I guess we can only will our bodies to heal so far, and then nature takes over.
So, have a good thought for Bob. He fought a good fight.
[Bill Netzeband, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org]