Harry Connick Jr. and his wife, Jill Goodacre, are finally opening up about her brave battle against deadly breast cancer in a new tell-all interview.
The couple revealed in People that in October 2012 they were blindsided when Goodacre, 53, was diagnosed with Stage 2 invasive ductal carcinoma, a disease that doesn’t run in her family.
“It’s not fine. I have it,” recalled Goodacre of telling her husband in an emotional phone call following a doctor delivering the bad news about her biopsy results.
Goodacre faced an immediate lumpectomy and possible grueling chemotherapy sessions.
“I was scared I was going to lose her, absolutely,” admitted former American Idol judge Connick, who tragically lost his mom to ovarian cancer when he was just 13.
“I wasn’t going to let her see that, but I was. I know from losing my mom that the worst can happen. She’s my best friend, and I really don’t know what I would do without her,” he said.
Goodacre’s battle with breast cancer wasn’t easy.
“The lumpectomy didn’t come back with clean margins,” she said. “So I had to go in for a second surgery the very next day. And then radiation absolutely wiped me out. And since then there’s been the Tamoxifen an estrogen modulator, which I’ve now been taking for five years.”
Despite their fight with her cancer, Goodacre and Connick are now stronger than ever.
“I think one of the reasons we’ve lasted this long is that we’re so aligned in everything,” Connick noted of his 23 year marriage to Goodacre. “We have the same morals, the same goals.”
The pair also revealed in the interview why they’ve waited so long to discuss Goodacre’s cancer, which has been in remission for years.
“It wasn’t like we were superstitious, like if we said something about being in the clear we’d somehow jinx it,” explained Goodacre. “But we wanted to be well on the other side of things before we told everybody.”
“I knew as soon as I met her that I wanted to grow old with her,” said Connick. “I’m so grateful that I still can.”
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