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The Eagle • theeagle.com

Thursday, June 9, 2011

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SMITH: ‘I haven’t been without pain for three years’ ▼

HOW TO HELP

Continued from A1 hole in his pelvic bone larger than a softball. Doctors diagnosed him with Stage 3 Multiple Myeloma, a rare cancer that eats away at the plasma cells in bone marrow. “I haven’t been without pain for three years,” Smith said. The aching varies from slight to extreme, sometimes driving him to tears. He’s cautious, as the cancer and chemotherapy have left his bones brittle. He snapped his collarbone in a store last month simply by reaching up for an item. “The pain was out of this world,” he said. “It was awful.” On Saturday, a ffundraiser to help Smith and his mother defray the cost of his medical expenses will be held at the Wellborn Community Center. Angela Elliott said she isn’t sure if her son will live for six months or 10 years. Smith has already outlived the American Cancer Society’s median life expectancy of 29 months for those with Stage 3 Multiple Myeloma. “It literally eats your bones,” his mother said of the cancer. It’s uncommon for someone as young as Smith to have

The Glen Smith Cancer Benefit will be Saturday from noon until 6 p.m. at the Wellborn Community Center in College Station. The event will feature a silent auction, raffles, live music and barbecue. Multiple Myeloma, which according to the International Myeloma Foundation usually affects the elderly. Elliott researched the cancer and found it usually takes 20 years to develop to stage 3, making her think Smith harbored the disease as a youth. Smith dreamed of being an Aggie before he moved out of Elliott’s home to live with his father. “His goal was to go to A&M, get into sports and make it big,” Elliott said of her son’s unrealized dream. Despite his athleticism, Smith’s mother had to push him to do sports because of his shyness. “I had to get firm with him,” she said. “I told him, ‘You can’t stop. You can’t quit.’” She now applies the same resilience to helping him overcome his disease.

“If I break, he’s going to break,” she said. “So I can’t do that. I cry when I’m at home but when I walk out, this is my job. This is what I do.” In 2009, the family traveled to Minnesota a ffor two months so Smith could receive a stem-cell transplant. He said it felt like a prison and left him anxious to get back to his job at Sam’s Club. Although doctors told him to take it easy, Smith returned and worked as much as possible. “He wants to function,” Elliott said. “He wants to have a normal life.” After working for Sam’s Club for a decade, Smith had to take a leave of absence due to his health. Before leaving, however, Smith met and began dating his girlfriend of one year, Bryan resident Amanda Sims. “He’s a gentleman,” Sims said. “I could tell right away when I met him.” Sims credits Smith’s determination to his faith and ability to put problems in pere ffriends spective, as they have who also have cancer. “His strength and beliefs make me a lot stronger of a person,” she said. “He sees others’ attitudes and it helps him realize he’s not the only

one. He knows he has to get up to make himself feel better.” Although the chemotherapy and medicine wear on Smith’s body, the couple find time to take Sims’ dog, Ziegen, and ferret, Bandit, for walks. “He just keeps going,” Sims said. “He doesn’t want to lay in bed all day. Even walking the mall helps him get around.” Smith’s girlfriend fuels his mental and spiritual health, his mother said. She considers Sims a real-life angel. Elliott has emptied her personal checking and saving accounts to help pay for her son’s medical bills. Although she’s managed to stay afloat, she worries about the day Smith’s health insurance benefits from Sam’s will no longer cover his needs. “In his mind and heart, he’s going to beat this and go back to work,” Elliott said. “He’s believing in a miracle, and that’s what it’s going to take.” Smith relies heavily on his ff ulffic faith to overcome the diffic ties that come with his condition. toug but you can’t “It’s tough, have a testimony without the test,” he said. “I think I’ll pass this one with flying colors.”

Bin Laden seizure sharpens U.S. aim By KIMBERLY DOZIER Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The U.S. is tracking possible new terror targets and stepping up surveillance of operatives previously considered minor al-Qaida figures after digging through the mountain of correspondence seized from Osama bin Laden’s ff als say. The trove ffici hideout, offici fil g in blanks of material is fillin on how al-Qaida operatives work, think and fit in the organization, they say. The new information is the result of five weeks of roundthe-clock work by a CIA-led team of data analysts, cyber experts and translators who are 95 percent finished decrypting and translating the years of material and expect to complete the effort by midJune, two U.S. officials say. Al-Qaida operatives worldwide are feeling the heat, with at least two of them altering their travel plans in recent weeks in apparent alarm that they might become the targets of another U.S. raid, one official said.

TH I M S N N E GL

R E C N A C

CARD: Informed Bush of second plane on Sept. 11 Continued from A1 hearing began Wednesday. President George H.W. Bush, whose presidential library is on the Texas A&M campus and was instrumental in Crocker’s decision to come to Texas A&M, has said throug through a spokesman that it would be his “great desire” to see Crocker return to A&M. Administrators within the Bush School noted there was precedent for serving the U.S. in a diplomatic role while still remaining affiliated — though not on the payroll — of a university. Henry Kissinger did so at Harvard, as did Condoleezza Rice at Yale. An “interim” dean is temporarily in charge pending selection of a permanent leader, while an “acting” dean assumes the responsibilities of the post while the dean is unavailable. Texas A&M University spokesman

Jason Cook said discussions are taking place regarding what would happen if Crocker is confirmed by the Senate. “Mr. Card is one individual who we have contacted in order to gauge his interest in the position during Dean Crocker’s absence should he be confirmed ... ,” Cook wrote in an email. “At this point, our next steps are dependent on the will of the U.S. Senate and the confirmation process.” Charles Hermann, the director of the Bush School’s master’s program in international affa af irs, declined to confir nf m any nfir conversations regarding the acting dean position. He said the school wants to continue aggressively pursuing fundraising and development. “That tilts toward the kind of person who would have a robust set of contacts among potential donors and, of course, a strong encouragement and endorsement of the 41st president,” Hermann said. The school, one of Texas A&M’s 10 col-

leges, has more than 220 master’s students and 40 faculty members. Card, who famously whispered into the 43rd president’s ear on Sept. 11, 2001, that a second plane had hit the World Trade Center, spoke at the Bush Library in October about his most memorable day as Bush’s top adviser: The day the president gripped a bullhorn and spoke to rescue workers amid rubble of 9/11. In addition, Card was President Ronald Reagan’s special assistant for intergovernmental affairs and secretary of transportation under the elder Bush, the namesake of the Bush School. He also served as head of the younger Bush’s White House Iraq Group, a circle of top insiders whose job was to market the 2003 U.S. invasion to the public. The primary stated purpose of the war was to find former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction. They were never found.

All officials spoke on condition of anonymity to describe the review of bin Laden files taken by U.S. Navy SEALs in a May 2 raid on his Abbottabad, Pakistan, hideout. The items taken by the incl a handwritten writ written SEALs included compu 10 hard journa five computers, journal, drives and 110 thumb drives. Copies of the material have been distributed to agencies from the FBI to the Defense Intelligence Agency to continue long-term analysis, one official said. The material is now classified. FBI Director Robert Mueller told Congress Cong on Wednesday that one of the early assessmentss ffrom the trove is that alQaida remains committed to attacking the United States. “We continue to exploit the materials seized from bin Laden’s compound” and “we are focused on the new information about the homeland threat gained from this operation,” Mueller told the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is considering legislation that would extend Mueller’s job for up to two more years.

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