Levon Helm In 'Final Stages' Of Cancer: What Is His Health History?

Legendary musician Levon Helm, who was part of The Band, is "in the final stages of his battle with cancer," according to a statement his family posted on his website.
Helm, 71, was known for his soulful voice and for his involvement in The Band as drummer and backing vocals.
His daughter, Amy, and wife Sandy posted the following message on his website:
Thank you fans and music lovers who have made his life so filled with joy and celebration... he has loved nothing more than to play, to fill the room up with music, lay down the back beat, and make the people dance! He did it every time he took the stage…
Helm was previously diagnosed with throat cancer -- on his vocal chords -- in 1998, CBS News reported. The disease nearly took away his voice, leaving him able to speak at just a whisper.
Helm was a smoker, and he smoked as many as three packs every day, according to CBS News.
"I think there's that secret little spot back there in your mind where you know something's wrong, but you don't want to admit it," Helm told the Albany Times Union in 2000. "You put it off, you know. But my family and friends made me go to the doctor, and that's when you start dealing with it."
Helm underwent a series of 25 treatments of radiation at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, the Albany Times Union reported.
But his voice strengthened in the years following, enabling him to release an album in 2009, CBS News reported.
Plus, the Albany Times Union reported that Helm quit smoking cigarettes once he was diagnosed with the throat cancer.
There is not yet any information on what kind of cancer Helm now faces -- whether it's a new cancer, or if his throat cancer has returned.


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