John Wayne

Despite battling cancer , John Wayne still manages to hold his press conference .

John Wayne cultivated an image and personality that film audiences adored for decades and to this day. But it required toughness and grit that’s hard to find and potentially counter-productive.

This is why when Wayne first priority cancer in 1964, a top f or the legend was to respond quickly. It’s insane to think about from a modern perspective but having cancer at that point in time wasn’t just risky from a health perspective, but a br anding one as well.

John Wayne was lucky. The resources and attention paid to Hollywood superstars at the time forced a more serious discussion of his poor health. Considering he was smoking five packs of cigarettes a day, it doesn’t seem like it was a hard case to solve.

That being said, catching it early didn’t mean that it was a seamless operation or recovery. For one, the Sands of Iwo Jima actor had to have a rib and a significant chunk of his lung removed just to mitigate the spread.

Second Battle with Cancer : Unfortunately, John Wayne was not able to overcome his second bout with cancer. 15 years later after his lung surgery, Wayne found out he had stomach cancer.

Just a few years after completing his final movie The Shootist, John Wayne succumbed to the devastating disease at the age of 72. The actor attempted various options, but it was not enough at the time. But, as mentioned above, Wayne left a lasting legacy. Not just for his acting, but for spreading awareness over exactly how lethal and brutal cancer can be.

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