Losing a partner to cancer is a terrible thing to go through. Their struggle, agony, and pain haunt the mind even after the person has left this world. Lakhs of people face the same ordeal, every day. But, a few, people dedicate their life for the welfare of cancer patients in the memory of their loved ones.
Meet Vivek Tomar, a 38-year-old from Haryana. Vivek’s wife, Kusum, died in 2019, after bravely fighting against lung cancer for the past seven years. But, Vivek didn’t give up after this. Kusum’s struggle inspired him to dedicate his life for cancer patients.
During Kusum’s treatment, Vivek formed a support group to help create awareness among people about lung cancer.
Although Kusum was undergoing treatment, she actively took part in his endeavour to save lives. Today, his 10-year-old son Suryavansh regularly joins his father in creating awareness on this disease. On November 10, the father-son duo will run a marathon to spread awareness on lung cancer.
While speaking to My Medical Mantra, Vivek Tomar said, “After my wife’s death, Suryavansh asked me one question. Baba, will you build a ‘Taj Mahal’ in the memory of mummy? The questioned changed my entire life. And, I decided, I will dedicate my life for cancer patients. I could not save my wife. But, will save each and every person who is battling against lung cancer.”
Even though Kusum was a non-smoker, she was diagnosed with ALK-positive lung cancer in 2012. Vivek says Kusum never gave up no matter how difficult things got. Though she was battling against cancer and undergoing treatment. She started counselling other patients who were in need.
“When Kusum had diagnosed cancer, Suryavansh was just three-years-old. We never told him about Kusum. But, as he grew up, he understood his mother was battling cancer. Today, Kusum is not with us physically. But, wherever she is, she is with us, supporting the fight against cancer.”
In 2017, Kusum, a lung cancer patient herself had run a marathon to spread awareness on it. Today, Vivek and Suryavansh, are taking her legacy forward.
Vivek said, “We were fighting on two fronts. One was against cancer, and the other was the healthcare system. At the time, drugs to treat my wife were not available in India. After trying hard we managed to get the drugs, but now the drugs are available for the other patients. It shows that progress has been made.”
Vivek concluded on a positive note, saying, “Cancer is not the end of life. Medical science and state-of-the-art facilities are there. What we need is a strong will to live and positivity. We need to stand on our feet. I and Suryavansh are doing our part to help people stand and fight against the Big-C.”