developed double pneumonia for the second time. The surgeon, before doing the operation, also suggested Hospice. Again Jo felt that God was not through with her. She loves me, and her family so much, that she has been willing to bear the pain and continue fighting.
While Jo was in the hospital in September of 2003, I received a very unusual phone call. When I answered the phone, a lady asked, "Is this Jerry Gilbert?"
I said, "yes."
She stated, "I am calling from the White House."
I thought, "oh sure, what white house?" I thought she was a telemarketer and started to hang up.
She continued, "President Bush wanted me to call you and ask how your wife is doing."
I said, "Well she is in the hospital at this time and I was getting ready to go back to stay with her."
"President Bush wanted me to find out if it would be O. K. for him to send her a get-well card. Due to the heavy security and screening, he just received your letter of encouragement you mailed him back in February."
I said, "Not only will it be O. K., but we will frame it."
Then it made sense. I had sent a note to our President telling him that the Gilbert family was praying for him. This was just before the Iraq war. I mentioned that my wife has been battling cancer for 5 years and was about to under go her first bone marrow transplant. I told him that I knew he was a praying man and I would appreciate his prayers. Her name is Jo.
After discovering that the phone call was legitimate, I relaxed and we talked for about 30 minutes. She wanted to know all about us.
Jo received the get-well card from President and Mrs. Bush on September 26, 2003. The card had the Presidential Seal and read, "I am sorry to learn about your illness, and I want to send you a note of encouragement during this difficult time. The First Lady joins me in sending our prayers and best wishes. Sincerely, George Bush." It was even a real signature!
She got out of United Regional Hospital in October and as soon as she was able to travel we went back to UAMS to continue the bone marrow transplant.
She was in intensive care for 19 days at the UAMS Hospital. This was when one of the greatest miracles that I have ever witnessed happened. Starting on about the 10th day of the transplant procedure she developed pneumonia again. She continued to go downhill. The Chemo had wiped out all of her bone marrow, thus all of her immune system also. On the 17th day surgery was scheduled to put tubes in her lungs the next morning. That evening, I went to our apartment to take a bath and change clothes. I was staying with her night and day in intensive care.
I went to the computer room at the apartment complex to e-mail everyone to pray. Again, I put her name on the World Wide Web for Prayer. While I was doing this a black lady, by the name of Dianne Woods, came into the computer room to use the copy machine. It felt like an Angel had entered the room. For some reason I asked, "Lady, do you know how to pray."
She replied, "I sure do!"
I explained the seriousness of Jo's condition and told her that unless God under takes for my wife, I am afraid she will not make it through the night. She said, "not only will I pray, but, I will call all of my friends and my pastor to pray." I found out that she was a member of a Pentecostal Church in North Little Rock. She was staying at the apartment complex for only a few days due to storm damage to her house!
That night at about 2:30 a. m. Jo could breathe well enough to go to sleep. At about 5:30 a. m. she was sleeping so well, I was afraid she had slipped into a coma. I woke her up and asked, "Don't you need to get up and use the bath room?" She had the 3 IV lines in her chest that were going again.
She woke up completely alert and said, "I sure do. I'm glad you woke me up."
At about 8:30 a. m. her doctor came by and listened and listened to her lungs, then exclaimed, " YOUR LUNGS ARE CLEAR!"
The surgeon came by a little later and said, "I hear your lungs have cleared. Let me listen." After listening she suggested a CT scan stating, "We need to see where all that fluid went to." After the CT scan she stated, " It just seems to have dissipated!"
This was on Wednesday morning. Thursday morning she not only was dismissed from intensive care, but, was told that she would not need to stay in the hospital. We went to our apartment on Thursday morning. She was to stay in town for further testing for another week.
All of the nurses on the floor, (about 12), were hugging us and talking about the "miracle" that happened. I sent Bible Studies to two of them. One teaches at his church, the other Bible study went to a nurse's husband who teaches the Bible, (on a voluntary basis), at a drug rehab center. These Bible studies had been pre arranged during