They had sworn love and fidelity in health as in illness… Then Tracey Ferrin fell ill and reality caught up with Nick, her husband. Instead of supporting his wife with bone cancer, the man fled…

Saying their vows on their wedding day, Tracey and Nick Ferrin never imagined that their union would be put to the test so quickly. Just a year after saying “Yes” to herself, the 18-year-old fell seriously ill.

In September 2001, Tracey was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, an extremely rare bone cancer, in her right leg. And her husband, far from supporting her, chose another path…

The shock of diagnosis

“The day he left me, I was in my room and I had just thrown up after the chemo,” Tracey told the NY Post newspaper. Looking back on her past, Tracey, now 38 and a fitness instructor, reflected on what was a double ordeal. It all started just days after the September 11 terrorist attacks. At only 18, Tracey learns that she has a rare bone cancer and this terrible diagnosis becomes too much for Nick, her husband, to bear. Her husband, who is 20, finds it difficult to bear his wife’s state of health “I think seeing me throw up is what started it all,” she analyzed.

Abandoned sick and pregnant

“I don’t remember exactly what he said to me,” she admitted, adding, “but he called a friend to pick him up, packed a bag and left.” At that time, Tracey, undergoing chemo, was six months pregnant with their second daughter. She finds herself alone, sick, pregnant with, in charge, their first child, Elly who was only 10 months old at the time. For the young woman, the blow is harsh, the break brutal and violent “I was heartbroken, I was crying and I begged him to stay but he did not,” she commented. During her third trimester, she began treatment at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Become a better woman

“While I was having chemo, the doctors told me that it was much more common for men to leave when a woman was sick than for a woman to leave when her husband was sick,” she noted. Tracey eventually gives birth to a beautiful, healthy daughter, Fayth, now 20. Tracey, whose cancer has been in remission for two decades, remains a philosopher “I always say, ‘If a man can’t help you deal with the worst he doesn’t deserve you to give your best’ cancer was not what made Nick leave, something else would have chased him away”. After divorcing Nick in 2003, she met Ryan with whom she has two sons, Bubba, 17, and Noah, 13, whom she married in 2020. Towards Nick, who committed suicide in 2016, she does not keep any resentment “My experiences have made me stronger. I learned empathy and compassion for others. I’m not grateful to cancer but I’m grateful for the life lessons it taught me and how this ordeal has made me a better woman.”

TESTIMONY My husband left me when I was diagnosed with cancer ©

Lara T.
Lara T.

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