Drug Puts Cancer Patient On Road To Recovery

By Jeff Neumeyer

August 9, 2011 Updated Aug 9, 2011 at 5:22 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) --- A Fort Wayne man is crediting the power of prayer and a cutting edge drug treatment for a miraculous rebound from cancer.

Joel Saunders, his wife Kimberly, and daughter Jadyn were forced to stare death in the face, after Joel was diagnosed with Metastatic Melanoma that produced tumors all over his body.

Kimberly Saunders/Wife: " We thought many times that he was going to die over the last two years, because he was so sick."

Refusing to give in or give up, they opted for a series of four treatments with a risky drug called Yervoy.

The drug triggered debilitating side effects, but it also took dead aim at the tumors.

Joel Saunders/Cancer Patient: " They started disappearing, and by the time we went in for the last treatment, they were gone. I couldn't even find them."

Before, the cancer was present in 25 different places in Saunders' body.

The results from the latest scan in early August, no cancer.

Kimberly Saunders: " We thought that some of the other tumors would just shrink and still be there a little bit. But to have them say we cannot find any cancer in your body, it's incredible."

Jeff Neumeyer: " Yervoy is promoted as a drug that reduces the effects of cancer. When the Saunders' family got the news that the cancer was gone, did they dare to believe that it was gone for good?"

Joel Saunders: " You think of it as a miracle, God could have it completely out of the way."

Kimberly Saunders: " I know that God is the 'Great Physician', and he can do anything, so yeah, I would choose to believe that he could be completely healed."

At the least, Saunders has been given extra time he wasn't counting on.

At the top of the family's 'to do' list, a vacation to Disney World.

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