Stars rally for civil rights icon John Lewis after cancer diagnosis

John Lewis

Stars and politicians including Cher and former President Barack Obama sent messages of support to U.S. civil rights icon John Lewis after he revealed he was battling pancreatic cancer on Sunday.

Lewis, 79, a member of the U.S. House of Representatives who was also a key figure in the civil rights movement in the 1960s, announced he has stage four pancreatic cancer on Sunday.

Upon hearing the news, a host of famous names from politics and entertainment rushed to show their support for the Congressman including Cher, Obama, Steven Van Zandt, Mark Hamill, and Stephen Colbert.

"WHY MUST THE GOOD FIGHT FOR LIIFE (sic), WHILE THE EVIL THRIVE," Cher tweeted. "I WILL PRAY EVERY DAY FOR REP JOHN LEWIS."

Obama wrote: "If there's one thing I love about @RepJohnLewis, it's his incomparable will to fight. I know he's got a lot more of that left in him. Praying for you, my friend."

Van Zandt shared: "My friend John Lewis has gone up the rough side of the mountain many times before and his battle with pancreatic cancer is no different. Our nation is praying for you, John."

Hamill expressed his wish that Lewis, "kicks cancer's A**," while Colbert simply added: "God bless John Lewis. A leader, a teacher, an example for us all."

The veteran politician reassured his admirers that he is hopeful he can beat the disease in his statement announcing his illness.

"I have been in some kind of fight - for freedom, equality, basic human rights - for nearly my entire life. I have never faced a fight quite like the one I have now," he wrote.

"While I am clear-eyed about the prognosis, doctors have told me that recent medical advances have made this type of cancer treatable in many cases, that treatment options are no longer as debilitating as they once were, and that I have a fighting chance."

A host of politicians also praised the civil rights leader, including ex-President Bill Clinton, and Democrat presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, and former Vice President Joe Biden.


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