by: Sarah Rosario Updated:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - On Monday night, doctors said a pastor in Mecklenburg County is cancer free after receiving a lifesaving surgery to combat a rare form of leukemia.
We have followed Larry Whitley's story for months.
You wouldn't know it by looking at him, but it's been almost a year since Whitley was diagnosed with a rare form of blood cancer called acutelymphoblastic leukemia or A-L-L.
The retired state police captain turned pastor is 30 pounds lighter and finally preaching again.
He just got a clean bill of health from his doctors last week.
My doctors said don't gain it back. I feel good, and I have to buy new clothes. The bone marrow biopsy, and the PET scan all showed negative and I'm cancer free," said Whitley, pastor of Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist
Eyewitness news first met Whitley in April when he was desperately searching for a bone marrow donor. His brother turned out to be a perfect match.
During his battle, his church members gathered to support him.
"We went into prayer people calling from all over Charlotte I answered the phone they were praying,' said Virginia Jones, a church member.
Whitley says those prayers gave him another shot at life. Now he wants to help others.
He and his church have partnered with the Lymphoma and Leukemia Society to regularly host bone marrow drives and to give money for cancer research.
"As Christian, that's what we're about and that's what we do. It just makes you feel good," said Trudy Jones.
Whitley already survived Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma five years ago. Now he's happy to say he's beaten cancer twice.
"It gives me another chance to continue to do what he is called me to do. It's just overwhelming," he said.
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