JUDAS PRIEST singer Rob Halford has revealed that he battled prostate cancer during the pandemic. "I had my little cancer battle a year ago, which I got through and that's in remission now, thank God," he told Consequence. "That happened while we were all locked down, so things happen for a reason as far as time sequence of events. I have nothing but gratitude to be at this point in my life, still doing what I love the most."
Rob previously mentioned his cancer battle in the new chapter added to the updated paperback edition of his 2020 memoir, "Confess". According to Halford, he was diagnosed after experiencing symptoms for at least a couple of years.
"I felt a combination of shock, horror, and oddly, relief — at least now I know!…'Am I going to die?'" he wrote. " It was all I could think of. I know blokes who've died of prostate cancer. 'No, you're not going to die, Rob,' said Dr. Ali."
In July 2020, Rob underwent prostatectomy, an operation where the entire prostate gland is removed plus some of the tissue around it, including the seminal vesicles. After more cancer was found earlier this year, he went through radiation treatments in April and May and eventually got then all-clear in June. He also had an appendectomy after a tumor was discovered on his appendix.
"It's been a draining year, I can't deny it, but I'm delighted to have come through it," Halford wrote in the book, according to Consequence. "I feel like I've had the most thorough MOT that a Metal God can have."
The 70-year-old said that his outlook on his cancer battle changed after watching a commercial for the Phoenix Children's hospital. "It showed kids with cancer," he said. "Some only babies. They were lying there, with tubes coming out of them, fighting for their lives. They didn't know what was going on…It made me feel totally ashamed of myself; Rob, how dare you be so selfish? And from that second, I change my entire mental attitude towards my disease."
Halford's cancer battle is one of a number of health scares the members of PRIEST have had to deal with in recent years. Last month, guitarist Richie Faulkner suffered an acute cardiac aortic dissection during the band's performance at the Louder Than Life festival. Faulkner was rushed to the UofL Health - Jewish Hospital where the cardiothoracic surgery team needed approximately 10 hours to complete a life-saving surgery.
PRIEST guitarist Glenn Tipton was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease seven years ago — after being stricken by the condition at least half a decade earlier — but announced in early 2018 he was going to sit out touring activities in support of the band's latest album, "Firepower". He was replaced by "Firepower" producer Andy Sneap, who is also known for his work in NWOBHM revivalists HELL and cult thrash outfit SABBAT.
"Confess" was released in September 2020 via Hachette Books. It was written with Ian Gittins, co-writer of "The Heroin Diaries" by Nikki Sixx.