WESTWOOD, N.J. -- At only 24, Hillsdale Police Dispatcher Corey Rooney of Westwood has already been down a long road fighting Hodgkin’s lymphoma. But he had reason to celebrate this week.
On Thursday, Nov. 12 -- nine months after a stem cell transplant -- Rooney learned that his cancer remained in remission.
"This is the longest stretch of time in almost three years that I've been cancer-free," he said.
Rooney barely had time to enjoy rebounding from Hodgkin’s when it doubled back on him last summer. Friends, family and strangers rallied to support the Westwood High School graduate, who studied criminal justice at Bergen Community College.
Rooney returned to work in April, a month after the transplant. He's back at the gym working out.
"Back to a normal lifestyle again," he told Daily Voice.
Those who know him have praised Rooney's strength, immense character and good humor throughout the entire ordeal.
His next hurdle comes in April -- the 15-month scan.
"Then it's once a year for five years," he said. "Once you hit the five-year mark, they consider you all good."
No matter what's next, Rooney's ready.
"Having such awesome support from so many people is the reason is the reason I've kept my spirits high," he told Daily Voice. “It means so much to have so many people behind me."
"I can't even begin to express the joy and happiness that I'm feeling right now," Rooney wrote in a Facebook post. "This has not only been extremely difficult on me, but also my family.
"I've gone through so many changes both physically and mentally that no one will ever understand unless you've experienced it firsthand. It truly is a tramatuic event to go through not once but twice.
"No matter how sick I was, and no matter how depressed I was, I kept fighting because I wanted to live," he wrote.
Rooney also had a bit of advice: "Appreciate everyone and everything, because you don't know what tomorrow brings."
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