On April 13, Exodus drummer Tom Hunting revealed that he has been diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma. He announced last week that he would undergo a total gastrectomy, a procedure performed when the cancer has spread widely in the stomach. According to band member/guitarist Gary Holt, the operation went through and “everything went according to plan”.
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A benefit show to help with Hunting medical expenses has been announced and will take place at One The Y in Sacramento, CA on July 17. On the program are Blind Illusion, Boneless Ones with guitarist Craig Locicero (Forbidden) and drummer Chris Kontos (Machine Head) and Jesus Crisis. The capacity is limited to 100 people.
Hunting’s Exodus band member, guitarist Gary Holt, launched a GoFundMe campaign on April 21 to help Tom fight cancer.
One post reads: “After decades of being dedicated to putting down the most pounding drums in thrash, Tom Hunting has been diagnosed with cancer. As he fights and beats this, he will need help with his bills, both medically and at home. During this pandemic Tom, like many of us, is working to keep himself going while we wait for the return of touring, but he is unable to do so as he undergoes chemo and more to get through this and back behind his drums with his brothers in Exodus to give will go miles to help Tom continue his struggle without worrying about rising medical bills and bills to keep a roof over his head. Thanks for all your help and support.”
Since its launch, the campaign has already raised nearly $80,000, including donations from Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett and Fozzy frontman Chris Jericho. Hunting expressed his gratitude via a Facebook video message on April 26, offering an update on his ongoing treatment. See below.
Visit the GoFundMe campaign page here.
Below you will find Hunting’s statement of April 13, which shows that he has been diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma:
“Today I start treatment for a squamous cell carcinoma. It is a stomach tumor that was diagnosed in my upper abdomen in February. I am making this public to make people aware of the symptoms of stomach and esophagus problems. they are persisting, please get it checked out I’m not going to talk sheepishly about it I feel like if I can help anyone with what I’ve learned, or anyone out there has information to share with me, it’s a win-win! If you can name the enemy give it power and you are 1 step closer to killing it!”
Okay, you heard the bad news. The good news is that he feels great physically. “I’m going to beat this like a goddamn snare drum that owes me money!!! I’ve had great doctors and a great support system that’s an army unto itself. I’m ready for battle!
“We have a lot to celebrate this year with the release of what will be a career-defining album and tours to follow! I’m excited for everyone to hear, and even more excited to get out there and play some of it! See you guys! all very soon! CHEERS!!!”