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  • David Foster (shown here with his friend Gracie) is National Strategic Advisor for Morris Communications, and has been a leader within the independent magazine community for years. In April 2005, Dave was diagnosed with Advanced Renal Cell Carcinoma, Stage 4, the sixth deadliest cancer, behind lung, liver, and breast. In emails to his ‘wellness group’ of friends and colleagues, Dave began chronicling his battle with the disease. In this blog, Dave Foster continues to “kick cancer’s arse”, sharing his story with a wider audience.

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« The Words That are Hardest to Say | Main | A Tribute »

April 15, 2008



Now that the sad days of departure are past could I ask anyone with unique memories of David to consider adding to:
As an in-memoriam.

In memory of David Crawford Foster with links to various photographic memoria.

Regards, Greg L-W.

I'm so sorry to hear about this. I found this blog last summer when my mother was diagnosed with a tumor in her kidney, and being in Georgia I left a comment asking for doctor recommendations. David was kind enough to go to his oncologist and get recommendations, then email me over the next few weeks. I've been reading ever since and will miss him. Thank you David.

My deepest sympathies to you and your family at this time.

David was an inspiration and I will cherish his memory. I consider myself lucky to have been touched by his wisdom, humour and bravery and for that I thank him.


David touched many lives beyond the shores of America - I for one, as a KC patient since Nov 1998 in Britain, dipped in for tips on courage when the Challenge grows a tad unbearable!

Miracles rarely happen because we overlook the obvious miracles - those we meet or learn of on the way!

Warm Hands - they are held by the many whose lives were benefitted by knowledge of David.

We hope to continue giving help through the Challenges of KC, as David did, at and will record his valiant battle in our IN MEMORIAM section.

Our thoughts are with you.
Greg L-W.

I am so saddened to hear of the loss of such a beautiful soul. I have been reading David's blog since I discovered it 2 years ago when my dad was diagnosed. I have never written a comment or sent an email to David, yet I felt like I knew him as I'm sure so many others did. I have often told my dad stories about things that David wrote and told him about being a warrior. They are near the same age and we also live in GA. He was such an inspiration and will be greatly missed.

My deepest sympathies to all of the Foster family...and also your kind gesture of sharing these last few days with his loyal readers. Take comfort in knowing that David's legacy will live on in the hearts of everyone who knew him, for he has touched strangers such as I, who never had the opportunity to meet him personally, but shared his writings and thoughts through his blog.
He was a galliant warrior, that is for certain. His daughter is continuing his love of writing through her recent postings.
May you all find comfort in the days ahead knowing that he is now at rest.

Dear Foster Family,

We will never forget Dave the Warrior, who certainly had a way with words that made us both laugh and cry. Most of all they gave us strength and hope. I remember when we first contacted Dave out of the blue, asking him for advice, as my father in law has Stage IV RCC and is an avid outdoorsman like Dave. Not even knowing anything about us, he took the time to respond to us quickly with advice and words of wisdom. For that, he has a special place in our hearts. From that moment, we've been fans of his blog. Dave certainly did kick kidney cancer's arse for three long years and encouraged others to do the same. We pray that God gives you all peace and strength.

Dear Sherry and Family,

I want to offer my deepest heartfelt condolences. I have followed David's blog every day and looked forward to seeing what he wrote each day. The countless hours of fishing, hunting, and driving around we have done together has created memories and experiences that will never be forgotten. We are here for you and Alex and join you in the grief you're experiencing. David I'll miss you!
Jan Scholer

To David's Family,
Our heartfelt sympathies to all of you. David's words have brought strength, joy, laughter, and tears into our world. His legacy will live on in his wonderful writings.
We wish you peace,
Anita and Jerry Nelson

With sadness but also a great sense of thanksgiving for a life well lived and a fight well fought, I learned yesterday of the death of my second cousin (or 1st cousin once removed, depending on which calculation schema you prefer), David Crawford Foster. David and I shared a middle name (which was his mother's, and my grandmother's, maiden name), a love of family and history, and more than a handful of laughs over the years. I shall miss him greatly.

He oft used the term "Warrior" in his writings on this blog. I confess my ignorance as to whether this was already a term in common usage among cancer fighters when David entered the fray, or whether it was a term his intensely literate mind came up with, but that doesn't really matter. The term suited David.

It strikes me as uncanny that David, as one of five of his parents' children, was the one to get the warrior name of "Crawford." I suppose it's too much to think that his Mama (my dearly-loved Aunt Norma) somehow had some subliminal hint back in 1945 in Mobile that her baby boy would one day have to fight a war for his life, but somehow I can't help but think it was more than happy circumstance that this one of her five would be the one to bear the Crawford name. That, like the term "Warrior," suited Dave Foster well.

You see, the Crawfords have a long history of being warriors. David's mama knew this better than anyone, for she traced the direct line back to Scotland, where in 1127 a young nobleman named Reginald, son of the Earl of Richmond, routed enemies of Scotland's King David I on the Roman Road near Kilbirnie, Ayrshire, for which he was given the title "Earl of Crawford."

The Crawfords have been a bunch of scrappers ever since. William Wallace (aka Braveheart), one of the fiercest fighters ever, was born of a mother who was a Crawford of this line.

Sir John Crawford, who was born in Kilbirnie in 1595, did not inherit his father's title or fortune, and was left to his own devices. A commentator of his day said his pedigree was longer than his rent roll (a condition which seems to have been true of most Crawfords ever since.) He struck out for Virginia Colony in 1643, and staked out a new life. Not content to rest on his laurels, John Crawford fought to the end. He was killed in 1676 at age 81, fighting in Bacon's Rebellion, a revolt against the British Crown that turned out to be prologue for the real one a hundred years later. This crusty old warrior was Dave Foster's nine-times great grandfather.

Sir John's son was the first David Crawford. Also born in Kilbirnie, he came with his father to VA at age 18. He served in the House of Burgesses, and was killed by Indians on the frontier in New Kent County, VA at the ripe old age of 85.

Moving forward through Dave's direct line, we find five successive generations of fighters: 1 and 2) two John Crawfords, who both served in the Revolution; 3) William (son of the younger John Crawford) who served in the War of 1812; 4) William's son David Crawford, who served the Confederacy in Company B of the 44th Regiment of Georgia Volunteers and was mortally wounded at the Wilderness in 1864 (like his namesake David Crawford Foster, who would be born 80 years later, this David was a tough old bird. Nobody was going to tell him his wound was mortal, and he fought its effects for three years till blood poisoning finally brought him down in 1867); and 5) Wm. J. Crawford (1842-1824), who fought alongside his father David in the 44th GA, and who lived in the same house in which David Foster's mother was born in 1914, and who was memorable presence in her formative years.

There's no question that David Crawford Foster was a hell of a Warrior, no matter how you slice it. His courage and resolve heartened many. That came from deeply within the man himself, and was a product of his own determination and of the support and encouragement he received. I give him all that, but I'll also bet that at least a tiny part of that determination within Dave Foster came from knowing about the fightin' Crawfords in his background. Dave would've thought it a sorry thing to be the first one in that long line to wimp out when it came time to fight, and he didn't disappoint. If anything, he raised the bar for the rest of us.

Daniel Crawford Langford, Jr.
Brooks, GA

We all have lost a comrade. But his words will go on forever. Those of us that have only met David's family through these words know of the power and strength they gave him to fight. Sherry and Hillary are the true heroes. David was our inspiration. He gave us life and now he is gone. He and I had a date to meet in New York City for a glass of sweet tea for him and me ice coffee. That day will come. The location has changed. I urge us all to let his memories and words live on. Peace my brother.

The Kidney-Onc mailing list is stricken by this death. How sad we are that such a valiant and expressive warrior has been taken. David touched many lives through his blog and his comments on Kidney-Onc.

May the love you all shared light your path ahead, now and forever...........Robin, one of the Kidney-Onc listowners

Dear Foster Family,
I am so sad to hear that David has passed. He fought a long hard battle, and he fought it well. He was an inspiration to so many people and will not soon be forgotten. I have many memories of him myself, from fishing, hunting, camping, each with a related story from David's infinite stock of memories. I will remember him well. My thoughts and prayers are with your family and with David.
Daniel Scholer

Sherry, thank you so much for taking time to let us know about Dave. There are just no words that come to mind that would ease your pain. When my son passed everyone said he was in a better place and he didn't have the pain anymore. Well this selfish ole Moma didn't want to give him up. I guess I kept hoping for a miracle. Take care and please know Dave will be in our hearts forever, he will never be forgotten. Thank you for sharing him with us.

Dear Foster Family,
I feel a great loss. David was a major support to me and my struggle against kidney cancer with my boyfriend, Jean. I will miss his thoughts and his writing. He was brave, articulate, and kind. His writing lives on and will help many others. Thanks for the posts Hilary. You;re all lucky to have been a part of David's life.

Dear Foster Family,
I feel a great loss. David was a major support to me and my struggle against kidney cancer with my boyfriend, Jean. I will miss his thoughts and his writing. He was brave, articulate, and kind. His writing lives on and will help many others. Thanks for the posts Hilary. You;re all lucky to have been a part of David's life.

Sad, indeed, Sherry. And not quite believable. In his tough battle, Dave touched so many who are now sending you their love, with their tributes to Warrior Dave and his Knight, expressing as perfectly as humans can their full and hurting hearts. What an amazing community!

I can't find any words of comfort to add. My husband and I had a warm relationship with Dave as editor at GSJ. And I feel I know you (and kept rooting for you) from this blog. Now, as a widow myself, all I can say is that I am so sorry for what you are going through.

Peace and love,


To the Foster Family:

My deepest smypathy to you all. I have always read Mr. Foster's blogs and have enjoyed reading them all. What a great writer but most important his strength and stories he has shared with other patients, and families who needed to be uplifted at times.
Thank you Mr. Foster.

wife of Bill Carona 1945-2007

This is so very sad. We want to keep our loved ones with us forever,
and it hurts so much when forever comes too soon. The loss is so
My husband Brian passed Jan. 30/08 with RCC and now maybe they
will be able to meet - two great Warriors which passed way too young. I often read David's blogs to Brian and quite often we would
share a chuckle or two as his writing was just incredible.
May the Lord bless you and keep you and send comfort at this most
difficult time.
Red Deer, Alberta Canada

Sherry, you are a brave "Knight" and David would be so proud of you. Thank you for letting us know. I was proud to call David "friend" and I will miss him. Thank you and your family for allowing us to share in this time with you. Our prayers are with you and the family and my you draw strenght from those who loved David.
God speed, my "friend"
Mary and Joe in Canada

Warrior, the metaphor that Dave used to describe his battle with cancer is apt and so very accurate. The true warrior cannot exist without spirit to sustain him/her. The most terrible things that anyone can imagine become real in battle. Dave's final battleground was his own body and the enemy was relentless and always there.

I knew Dave for forty three years and to me he surpassed the ordinary warrior. In the arena of life he took on all challenges. He was THE GLADIATOR, the Consummate Champion. He jumped into battle and went forward until he prevailed. I know he had fears just like each of us, but none of them could stop his advance in his life battles.

Dave, I have loved you so long. I will miss you so much for the rest of my life.


I am too sad for words. I'm sorry David is gone. He was a friend and a mentor to me. I will miss his sharp wit and great stories. I'll always remember him calmly smoking his pipe and tapping away on his laptop on the back porch, no matter how cold or wet it was, reflecting on how wonderful it is just to be outside. He made his mark on countless people-including me. He will be sorely missed.
Let me know if there is anything I can do for you and Alex anytime.

A piece of all of our hearts went with David. What a brave and relentless fighter! I'll come back to his words often because, as you said, the war is not over and all the warriors will remember his strength and great humor. My prayers are with all of you, Bobby

Our most heartfelt sympathy to all of you in the Foster family...what a sad day. I'm relieved that it was somewhat peaceful for him and you.

Please know that as much as he may have been helped by his readers to fight the good fight even harder, he was MORE help to so many of us out here, that I think we were the benefactors of that relationship. I just want to say "thank you" one last time to you, him, and God for sending him to us--he was a breath of fresh air. This Warrior/Knight team will miss reading his blogs in the evening together.
Goodbye David.

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