A state senator diagnosed with cervical cancer last spring has apparently beaten the odds. Senator Mary Lundby of Marion says she got her test results back last Tuesday, and Lundby’s doctors tell her that as of today, she is “cancer-free.” Lundby, who underwent aggressive treatment, says the past few months have changed her perspective on life. “I had never had a lot of pain and suffering in my life…so I’ll be more compassionate to people who suffer,” Lundby says. “I didn’t appreciate my job enough and my constituents enough and I have an entirely different attitude about the privilege of serving and my responsibility to my constituents.”
Lundby says she got thousands of cards and e-mail, rides to and from the hospital and all sorts of help around the house. “People prayed for me. Some prayed that I’d have a better personality, but that one didn’t come true yet,” she jokes. Lundby doesn’t think her experience will change her work ethic at the statehouse. “I don’t know that it’ll affect my lawmaking so much because I think I always worked at it pretty hard and paid attention,” Lundby says. “It reinforces my independence and it reinforces my will and strength to do what I think is right and it gives me a lot of comfort.”
Another woman in the statehouse is just starting her battle with cancer. Representative Mary Lou Freeman of Alta underwent breast cancer surgery last week.