Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Through It All

Some of you reading this article have possibly come to our morning show in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and have heard me share my story. Some of you will be reading it for the very first time. This is not a story I necessarily like to tell because in the telling of it sometimes my mind will flashback to the most painful time of my life but by the time I finish, I can smile and say, “Thank You God for healing me. I know that You spared my life to tell the world what a Great God You Are and that You are still the same, yesterday, today, and forever.”

In late January of 2012, I was diagnosed with inoperable Colorectal Cancer. I had an idea that I had a major problem but wouldn’t speak it to anyone. The moment I heard I had cancer I knew that God would be my only hope and that He would have to see me through it.

My husband, RW, and I got home that afternoon and I sat down and began to write Scriptures of Healing. I made copies of what I had written and posted them in areas I knew I would be…the kitchen cabinets, my dressing table mirror, the kitchen table, the bedside table, and on the door of the bathroom cabinet.

In March I began treatments of chemo and radiation. It was the day before my 65th birthday and I had to go into the “Chemo Suite” and get my first chemo treatment and then they attached a chemo pump that would go with me until Friday afternoon when I would return to the “Chemo Suite” and would have it removed. This would go on every week for the next few months. On Mondays it would be plugged into my port, On Fridays it would be removed.

I don’t know if any of you have experienced a Chemo Pump but you are attached to it 24/7. You eat with it, you sleep with it, you shower with it (without getting it wet…that was an ordeal), and in my case…I performed on our show with it. Not only that but literally every minute, especially in the quiet of the night, you hear it go off as it shoots that medicine into your system.

Not only did I have this chemo pump on but everyday, Monday through Friday, as soon as the show was over, RW would get me into the car and take me to Knoxville to UT Med Center to the “Radiation Suite” to have a radiation treatment. You become quickly acquainted with other patients and their families when each of you is in the waiting room everyday at the same time each day. You tend to become another kind of family.

Three days after all of these treatments started, as I was getting ready to go to the theater for our show, I brushed through my hair and what a shock, the brush was full of the hair and I had a big bald spot where the hair had been. I continued to brush and finally just called my husband into the room. He came in and the look on his face said it all. I told him to go get his electric razor and just shave my head. He balked momentarily but did as I had asked.

I need to tell you that I have worn wigs off and on through the years and actually had several wigs. One I had specifically bought, just in case I needed it, for the possible hair loss. The others were older ones I had for several years to use on ‘bad hair days’.

Two months into radiation, I had third degree burns on the inside of my legs and in other private areas. I could no longer wear anything but caftans because if anything touched my skin, the flesh would peel off in layers of skin and would leave the most painful open skin with blisters.

I need to inject that up to this time, I had gone into the theater everyday to try to perform/sing. Why do I use the word perform? In the ministry that God gave us, we are in world of many people who don’t know Jesus Christ and His love. We don’t preach because these are people who have paid for entertainment and give them that but through that entertainment we give them Jesus, His love, and hope through Him. I share my testimony of God’s healing right before intermission and when we go out to the lobby after the first half, many people come to us and share their needs, their healing, ask for prayer, etc.

At the beginning of treatment, I would be able to barely get through a show, then it was about half of a show, then it became one song, and finally I couldn’t go in at all.

One afternoon when I was so weak and burnt from the radiation, my Radiation/Oncologist came in as I was getting off of the radiation table. He told me that he was going to give me two weeks off of radiation and then we would pick it back up again as I had to finish the treatment. He said, “we’re going to pray and believe that God will regenerate your skin somewhat and we can get this done. But to be honest, if you live, you’ll be in a wheelchair the rest of your life with a colostomy.”

RW got me home that afternoon but I hadn’t told him anything that the doctor had said. I was too weak to even talk.

When he got me home and into our bedroom and I began to cry out to God. I was crying out the Scriptures that I had posted all over my house and I closed with, “God just go on and take me now, take me now! I’m ready to go! I can’t endure this any longer and I can’t put my family through anymore. But if You still have something left for me to do…I need you to heal me!”

On December 28, 2012, RW and I was in an examination room waiting for my Colorectal Specialist and the door opened, my doctor walked in, pointed his finger at me and said, “I pronounce you cured of Cancer!” My latest CT scan had showed the tumor was gone! Hallelujah!!!

On December 16th of 2013, after months of CTs, bloodwork, and numerous tests, RW and I were sitting across from my Oncologist and he said, “Donna, you are our Miracle patient. All of the doctors involved in your case have sat down and discussed it many times and we all realize it was your determination and your faith that made you Whole!

Yes, determination and faith works but be sure and add THE WORD OF GOD with it. What better prescription can you have.

And so as I share this rather lengthy testimony with you, I have to tell you that I must give a shorter version in the theater but we’ve seen God take it and use for His Glory. I know that is the reason God healed me and I know that He can do the same for you.

Donna Blackwood

Donna Blackwood likes to say she is one-half of the dynamic duo, the other half being her husband of 50 years, RW Blackwood.

The Blackwood Singers formed in 1967 where Donna joined her husband of two years traveling and singing all over America.  Donna has recorded on the Benson Heartwarming Impact label.  She 
has had several songs in the Gospel Charts in the early seventies, "Through It All", "He Was There All The Time", Find No Fault in Him" "Put Your Hand in the Hand", and several others as part of the Blackwood Singers group.

In the 1976, the group moved to Nashville where her husband signed the group to the Capitol recording label and had six Billboard Country Top 100 Charted Songs.

In the 1987, RW got a call from the Blackwood Brothers asking him to move back to Memphis and join the group.  Donna semi-retired to raise their two children, Andrea and Robbie, while RW was working with the Blackwood Brothers.

In 1990, the couple moved to Branson, Missouri and reformed the Blackwood Singers, with their adult children becoming a part of the group, singing the Ozark Country Jubilee and Shepherd of the Hills.

In the year 2000, RW and Donna moved to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee to join RW's brother, Ron, and sing at the Louise Mandrell Theater.  RW's brother and his wife retired to Texas but Donna and RW remained in Pigeon Forge where they still perform their Blackwood Morning Show six days a week at the Smoky Mountain Opry Theater.

In the year 2016, RW and Donna will be moving back to Branson, Missouri where they will rejoin their children and their eleven grandchildren. They will be performing at the Starlite Theater as the morning show opening in mid-March of 2016.

Donna shares her testimony of healing everyday at the theater and knows that God healed her to tell her story, to give people hope, to let them know that Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.


  1. Wow--what a testimony to His goodness, grace, and healing power! Thanks for sharing, Jamie!

  2. I love to hear stories of God's faithfulness. Thank you for sharing your story Donna. Sweet blessings to you.