A member from our home ward shared a talk with me where Spencer W. Kimball was joking about going east among "cutthroats". He was speaking about having cancer of the throat and vocal cords. While reading the Talk one part really stood out. I think I realize why Cory had so much fear about the surgery on his neck. I quote from the talk:
In 1957 throat problems developed, to be diagnosed as cancer of the throat and of the vocal cords. This, perhaps, was to be his Gethsemane."for his voice to preach and to speak was his ministry"...Cory had mentioned that he couldn't be a missionary after this surgery. He had said multiple times that he wasn't going to be able to speak after. While we were able to comfort him and he is able to speak, I think I better understand where his fear was coming from. He has such a love for our Savior and I look up to him so much. We are blessed to have been given the privilege to raise such a wonderful child of our Father.
He went East for the operation. Elder Harold B. Lee was there. As he was prepared for surgery he agonized over the ominous possibilities, telling the Lord that he did not see how he could live without a voice, for his voice to preach and to speak was his ministry.
“This is no ordinary man you’re operating on,” Elder Lee told the surgeon.
Dave and Linda