Print Benefit set for singin’ cowboy fighting cancer
Written by Lu Stitt   
Sunday, 04 November 2012 00:00

He may be a rootin’ tootin’ singin’ cowboy, but Bill Bassett recently found out he wasn’t 10 feet tall and bulletproof.

Bill Bassett, a performer with the Blazin’ M Cowboys, will be the beneficiary of a show at the local dinner and entertainment ranch Friday, Nov. 16. The proceeds from the show will go toward paying for costs associated with Bassett’s leukemia treatments.“The news hit me like a ton of bricks. I wasn’t feeling well for a few days and called in sick on my day job. I went to the urgent care, they took my blood and sent me directly to the ER,” said Bill Bassett, a singing cowboy and host at a chuck wagon dinner and show restaurant in Cottonwood.

Bassett was diagnosed with hairy cell leukemia, which attacks white blood cells and compromises the immune system. His whole body reacted, including his red blood count that became critically low. He also had pneumonia.

“They treated me initially with antibiotics. Once the pneumonia cleared up and protections were in place like a mask, they sent me home with a pump device that fed the chemo drugs. I wore that for one week. The side effects were very minimal — like leukemia light,” Bassett said and laughed.

Unfortunately, Bassett’s diagnosis came at a time he did not have medical insurance, and the bills piled up. His fellow staff members at the restaurant stepped up and planned a fundraiser to help.

For the full story, see the Wednesday, Oct. 24, edition of The Camp Verde Journal or the Cottonwood Journal Extra.