Blood recipient talks about uphill battle with cancer - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Hattiesburg blood recipient talks about uphill battle with cancer

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) -

Regina Shelton and Donald Shelton are walking testimonies of a love that works in sickness and in health.

Residents of Richton, Regina is the caregiver, wife, and friend of her husband Donald, who was diagnosed with stomach cancer in August of 2012. Her eyes well with tears as she tells her husband's story.

"It's just hard," Shelton said. "We don't know what's going to happen from one day to the next, so I just do what I have to do, and he does what he has to do."

The couple wed a few years ago, but Regina says they're soul mates who found each other later than most.

Donald Shelton, a landscaper from the Westbank who loves the outdoors, claims he was never sick a day in his life until his diagnosis of stomach cancer. Donald is an active blood recipient, whose life depends on the blood he receives from donors in Hattiesburg on a regular basis.

He says each day is an uphill battle.

"Now, I can't do the things that I used to," Shelton said, as his eyes welled with tears.

"I used to be able to go out and work and support a family," he said, voice shaking.

"I can't do it anymore. It's hard."

Although Donald is exhausted from the countless days of radiation and blood transfusions, there's a stoic look in his eye.

Regina says her faith is what keeps them going.

"He's my soul mate, but I believe God brought us together, because He knew Donald was going to be sick," she said.

Donald recently received a blood port for his blood transfusions. Although he's relieved to have received the port, he just received a feeding tube on Wednesday. The tumor in his stomach has become too large for him to ingest solids, so he can only consume liquids from now on.

Doctors cannot perform surgery to remove the tumor, because it is surrounded by lymph nodes. Donald is feeling better today than he has in awhile.

"I was at the hospital last night, and I got two pints of blood, so I feel better now," he said.

Donald received his 26th pint of blood in less than a year on Monday night.

"Ever since the day I found out I had cancer, I've been fightin'," he said.

"That's all you can do."

If you would like to help those in need of blood you can donate at United Blood Services in Hattiesburg on July 25 between 7am and 7pm.

Copyright 2013 WDAM. All rights reserved.

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