by Tom Rademacher, Veteran Grand Rapids Press columnist and long-time Michigan Blood donor
In the spring of 2011, Jack noticed himself becoming more tired, and experiencing lower back pain.
"I was 58 and a little overweight," he says with a shrug, "and I thought it was just part of the aging process."
In April of that year Jack visited Michigan Blood - as he'd been doing each month for years - to participate in the apheresis program. But that day Jack's iron tested too low, preventing him from donating. But after two subsequent visits yielded the same results, Jack reasoned that "something's not right," so he made arrangements to see his physician. A blood draw revealed grim news: He had cancer.