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Two Cancer Strangers Now Connected by a Purple Heart

by Katya Guillaume

Publication: KFDX-TV (NBC, Wichita Falls)

"I was telling my little grandkids about a man that lived down at the barn," Ronnie Reddell tells 11-year-old Dominic Watson.

It started off as a conversation.

"Ran into him one day here and we just started chatting," Watson told us as he remembers the day he met Reddell.

Reddell continued to say, "He was walking around up here and he wasn't smiling real big and the third time I talked to him was up here at the counter and he gave me this band, Dominic's Warrior." 

The two are now friends, friends who met at the Texas Oncology center.

Dominic's mother said, "Dominic was diagnosed with Giant Cell Glioblastoma Multiform." 

It's a rare brain tumor that affects all neurological issues like memory loss or motor function. 

Dominic's mother told us that the doctors found a tumor in his brain earlier this year and even though, it's been removed, there are still a lot of unanswered questions.

She continued to tell us, "He's a fighter, he's just a go-getter and do what you need to do, but coming here every day and meeting someone who's going through the same thing as him, I think they help each other, it's just nice having a friend and waking up and looking forward to going to radiation." 

But through his progress, Dominic met a cancer warrior and now they share something else. 

"Dominic would you wear this for me" Reddell asked. 

He replied, "Yes"

Reddell continued to tell him, "and would you keep both of us safe?" 

It's a purple heart he was given from his time serving in Vietnam.

Dominic said, "I knew that it was a military medal but I thought it was for like being really courageous and brave and not getting wounded." 

Reddell told us, "It might inspire him and help both of us." 

Since then, Dominic has never taken the medal off and said he doesn't plan to, as he looks to one-day beat cancer.

Reddell finished by telling Dominic, "We'll get out of this foxhole together, alright!" 

Both Ronnie and Dominic are going through radiation, hopefully, until the first part of April. Dominic said until then, he will continue to keep the bed warm for Ronnie, who does his radiation every day right after him. 

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