November 26, 2008

Mayor Becker to have cancer surgery Dec. 1

Mayor Gary Becker is scheduled to have a cancerous kidney removed on Dec. 1.

Becker will have the surgery at Froedtert Memorial Hospital in Wauwatosa and, if all goes well, will be out of work for two weeks.

In an interview Wednesday, Becker described the procedure as routine. He said the cancer is contained within the kidney and has not spread. No chemotherapy is needed.

"They say taking out a kidney is the new gall bladder," Becker joked.

The tumor was discovered earlier this month after Becker spent Nov. 5-6 in the hospital with an upper respiratory infection. While X-raying his lungs, doctors noticed a mass on his kidney, Becker said.

"I was fortunate to be in the hospital when I was," he said.

Becker said his absence should not affect city operations. Becker expects to miss one City Council meeting. City Council President David Maack will run the meeting in his absence.

Here is the message Becker sent out to city staff Wednesday:
As most of you know I have had some respiratory problems, and spent a few days in the hospital on November, 5th and 6th.

That has gotten much better, but while in the hospital they did discover a tumor on my kidney. It is contained and has not spread, so it is not a big deal. However, the kidney will have to be removed.

I will be going in to Froedert on Monday December 1st for the operation. I plan on a 2 or 3 night stay and then another week or so of recovery at home.

I will keep you posted, but at this time it is not something to worry a great deal about, and I expect a full recovery without any need for follow up treatments.

Everyone have a great Thanksgiving and I will see you in a few weeks.


  1. I wish him a quick recovery. Cancer is a bad bad thing.

  2. Please take care of yourself. We only live once so go get healthy. Best wishes Mayor!

  3. Maybe he'll take this as a sign he should quit smoking. He's lucky is wasn't his lungs.

  4. Urban Pioneer11/28/2008 12:02 PM

    Good Luck Mayor, Lets get u back to healthy so we can return to bashing the things we disagree with, and supporting the stuff we agree with. Cheers, Mayor.