If there's one thing Celine Dion is known for (apart from her astonishing voice and theatrics), it's her incredibly warm and giving heart. The Quebec singer has proved her sincerity once again with her recent announcement that she is taking an extended break from work to take care of her husband, René Angélil, 72, who is battling cancer for the second time.
When a family member falls ill, everyday responsibilities can make it difficult to be there for them as much as you'd like, but even with her upcoming tour, Las Vegas shows and various business commitments, Dion made the tough decision to be by her husband's side.
Angélil, who was also Dion's manager from 1980 until this year, is dealing with throat cancer, having first been diagnosed with and treated for the disease in 1999. The prognosis for the disease varies widely by the stage at which it was caught, as well as the type of cancer, according to Cancer.org. For stage I and II cancer, there can be an almost 75 per cent survival rate for five years and beyond.
Angélil underwent another surgery earlier last December for throat cancer, with doctors even replacing parts of his tongue to give him the ability to speak, reported the Las Vegas Sun.
Dion has also been battling an inflammation of her vocal chords, and was forced to cancel 10 Vegas performances earlier this year, the Hollywood Reporter explained. She returned to the stage in June.
This focus on well-being has been part of the couple's relationship for years. As they told Katie Couric in an interview in 2013, Dion was there for every treatment when Angélil was first diagnosed.
"For the first time, he needed me, because for all the years before, I needed him," explained Dion. "If I just pay back, can give him back everything he's done for me, it's today."
Dion, who has been honest about other struggles she's encountered, from going through IVF six times to this present battle Angélil faces, has the same frank approach when it comes to life without him.
"You'll be there, because I represent both of us," she said to Angélil in the Couric interview, after he noted he won't be there to see their twins, now three years old, graduate from college. "If you think of tomorrow, maybe I'm the one who's going to go first ... Whatever happens happens, and I will always represent you as Mom and Dad."
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