Blythe Danner Has Been Fighting Same Cancer That Killed Husband

Gwyneth Paltrow's mother says she's now 'fine and dandy' after battling oral cancer
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 21, 2022 4:47 PM CST
Gwyneth Paltrow's Mom 'Fine and Dandy' After Cancer Fight
Blythe Danner poses for a portrait to promote the film "The Tomorrow Man" at the Salesforce Music Lodge during the Sundance Film Festival on Monday, Jan. 28, 2019, in Park City, Utah.   (Photo by Taylor Jewell/Invision/AP)

"Everyone is touched by cancer in some way, but it's unusual for a couple to have the same cancer," Blythe Danner, mother of actor Gwyneth Paltrow and director Jake Paltrow, tells People. Danner, an Emmy-winning actor, has disclosed that she is in remission after a yearslong battle against oral cancer—the same cancer that killed her husband, Bruce Paltrow, 20 years ago. Paltrow, 79, says that when she was diagnosed in March 2018, she "looked up at heaven and said to Bruce, 'Are you lonely up there?'" Oral cancer, she says, is "a sneaky disease. But I'm fine and dandy now. And I'm lucky to be alive." She has undergone radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and three surgeries.

Paltrow says she was "feeling very woozy" and "forgetting everything" before she found a lump on her neck, in a spot very close to where Bruce Paltrow found a lump three years before his death. She tells People that she kept the diagnosis from her kids for a long time because she wanted to "forge ahead as a mother" and didn't want them to worry. Gwyneth Paltrow says she was shocked when she finally found out—and it "felt really eerie" because it was so similar to her father's cancer. Danner is working with the Oral Cancer Foundation to raise awareness of oral cancers, CNN reports. Brian Hill, the foundation's executive director, says having a dental professional screen for the early signs is "quick, inexpensive, and painless." (More Gwyneth Paltrow stories.)

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