Don LaFontaine, "The Voice of God," Hospitalized
In a world where movie trailers always contain the phrase "in a world where," there's unfortunate news. Don LaFontaine, nicknamed "The Voice of God," was brought in to Cedar's Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles Friday afternoon August 22 by his wife, Nita, after LaFontaine was experiencing shortness of breath. By Saturday morning, wife Nita had emailed members of the voiceover community to ask for prayers, stating that LaFontaine is "fighting for his life."
This news comes on the heels of an email sent from LaFontaine earlier in the month describing his year long battle with what he describes as a "suspicious growth" on his lymph nodes and left lung.
A biopsy on the lung indicated the tumor was benign, but during the procedure, his lung was nicked, causing it to collapse and air to be released into his upper body several times over multiple days. Further tests found a growth in his colon and a tumor under his lung that threatened to encircle his Aortic Valve.
LaFontaine's doctors began chemotherapy over several months which eventually led to his being able to return to work. However, the radiation therapy had spread to his lungs, making it virtually impossible for him to draw the breaths he needed to even walk, let alone work as a voiceover artist.
His email describing his year comes to a close with this plea, highlighted in green:
"But the real point of all this is the Genisis [sic] of the condition. I was a smoker, on and off, for thirty years. I quit nearly twenty years ago, but that crap has a tendency to lie doggo in your system. It finally caught up with me, and as you've just read - it ain't pretty. For those of you who are in the Voice Over business, and you think that smoking is adding some wonderful quality to your instrument - WAKE UP! Quit! Today! Whoever you are - if you smoke - Stop! All you are adding is garbage to your vocal cords, and a nice deep layer of tar and poison on the linings of your lungs."
LaFontaine's wife, Nina, asks today for thoughts, prayers, and well wishes be sent out for him, and for his daughters.