The Rev. David Nygard, senior pastor at Messiah Lutheran Church in Joliet, where Jim was a member, said Jim often sat quietly in his hospital room with his eyes closed.
"He'd say, 'I'm just praying for the people who are praying for me,'" Nygard said. "It wasn't just that he contacted people to say, 'Pray for me.' He took it on himself to pray for them and whatever their needs might be."
The prayers worked, Cathy said. And chemotherapy never made James sick.
"He never missed a treatment because his platelets were off or anything like that," Cathy said.
Jim went through chemotherapy beautifully. It was a 10-week course and he went into remission for five years. They were just going to consider him cured, which they say cannot be done with the non-Hodgkins lymphoma, but at the five-year mark, they found a lump behind his ear, a tumor that had attached to his brain."
Jim had more chemotherapy, which put him in remission for another three years.
"It returned in October 2017 and they put him through the treatments," Cathy said. "But by them the cancer had outsmarted the chemo and he was exhausted."