Cancer survivor Randy Pence, 51, had a cheat sheet in his hand, telling him what he was supposed to say. But the moment Pence got up to the podium at the Duke Adult Bone Marrow Transplant reunion in September, he found himself holding back the tightness in his throat, unable to speak.
To his own admission, he’s a gabber—not the type to ever be at a loss for words. But he couldn’t find words to express his gratitude to the man who would soon join him on stage: a stranger from California who went through the challenging process of donating his bone marrow to save Pence’s life.
“How do you thank the person who saved your life?” said Pence, who has three children with his wife, Lisa. “Who gave you another day with your family? I just don’t know how to put it into words.”