Loren Joseph Liedl, 58, of Amery, Wisconsin, passed away peacefully at Willow Ridge Nursing Home with his family at his side. He lost his long hard fought battle with multiple myeloma that started in 1996. That’s 14 years! 14 years living with—and battling this relentless and insidious cancer.
Loren was a dear friend. Here is what I wrote about Loren in my first book, Living with Multiple Myeloma, which was first published one year ago:
Loren is a hero of mine. He has been battling multiple myeloma for over twelve years. That is an eternity in the myeloma survival business! In 2007, only ten percent of myeloma patients survived ten years or more. That number quickly fell to five percent or less after twelve years. Yet here he was, working part-time and spending priceless days with friends and family, acting like he would live forever! Loren tried every available drug and treatment more than once. “Everything that I have tried seems to work for about fourteen months. The only drug that didn’t work well for me was Revlimid. I had an allergic skin reaction to the drug that makes it almost impossible for me to use.” Loren went on to explain, ironically, his stem cell transplant had only worked for about ten months. Of all the many therapies he tried, the most dangerous and invasive one worked for the shortest period of time. That really got me thinking! Loren suggested on several occasions I delay my transplant. “Always use your conservative options first,” Loren would say. “My transplant wasn’t any big deal, but I know people who have had real problems during and after their transplants.”
Loren’s advice helped me make the decision to delay my stem cell transplant indefinitely—a decision which has turned-out very well for me.
Plain and simple, Loren was a great guy! His wife, Joan, was an exemplary caregiver. Strong and thoughtful, Joan was Loren’s best friend and patient advocate. They lived a very good life together, traveling the world and living every hour of every day right up to the end.
Loren, you will be missed!
Feel good and keep smiling! Joan, take comfort in knowing Loren lived a full, wonderful life. Take comfort in knowing Loren helped other multple myeloma patients like me. Many thanks to both of you! Pat