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Cancer 1990 1992
Heart Attacked and Angioplasty
Out-of-Body-Experience (OBE) or
Near-Death-Experience (NDE) 1998
Heart Triple By-Pass
Guardian Angels 1999
Grandpa Frank Gorrez
I am Frank D. Gorrez, Jr the survivor. I wrote this life threatening experience based
on my diary written at the time I was under treatment for Cancer in 1990 to 1992,
Heart Attacked followed by Angioplasty procedure and Out of Body Experience
(OBE) in 1998, then Triple By-Pass and presence of what I termed Guardian Angels
while recovering in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) 1999. I was in-and-out of
consciousness for five days at the onset of my heart attacked and two cardiac
failures. Angioplasty procedure was performed after all my vital signs went back to
I am ever thankful to be alive and to be able to continue sharing my life with my
family and others, and still be able to do what counts most. I had the cancer at the
age of 58 to 60, heart attacked at 66 and triple by-pass at 67 years old. My
strongest security and ally is the bible, which has been part of my life ever since
and will be until the Lord takes me under His wings. I am now 82 years old (2014)
as of this writing.
I decided to share my life experience and blessings with my children, grandchildren
and friends. How wonderful it is to know God through Jesus Christ as our loving and
caring father, that the bible - the words of God, is forever a comforting source of
truth and guide to righteousness in our daily life.
Others may doubt the Out of Body Experience (OBE) I thankfully experienced or
Near Death Experience (NDE) and the existence of our individual spirits and angels.
How insignificant is my spiritual journey when we believe God in His Spiritual being
and angels appeared as well to many prophets for generations. Jesus Christ was
raised in Spirit three days after His mortal body was crucified. I compiled countless
bible verses that relates to all our lives which strengthen my faith in God through
I can only say, be guided by the bible and find the simple explanation Im sharing in
my testimony. Try to analyse or picture the sequence of events that occurred in my
battle to survive starting from cancer ailment, heart attacked, stent procedure and
triple by-pass, and safely comforted afterwards by angels. These events occurred
between 1992 to 1999 a seven year period. I can only find true meaning and
comfort to all the interventions between and among events in my life in the Bible.
Finally, I dedicate this writing to my dearest wife who journeyed together with me
throughout our married life, through life bumpy ups and downs, and most of all her
ever present when I needed her most during my personal ordeal. Only with God
through Jesus Christ I believed I was cured and given another chance in life.
He give his life to free us from every kind of sin, to cleanse us, and to
make us his very own people, totally committed to doing what is right.
Titus 2:14 He saved us, not because of the good things we did, but because
of his mercy. He washed away our sins and gave us a new life through the
Holy Spirit. Titus3:5
CANCER SURVIVOR 1990 - 1992
I was able to write the events in a diary during
my 33 days cobalt radiation therapy for cancer
treatment, which I will quote portion of it the
way it was written, when my emotions were in
a shamble with love, pain, meditation, prayers,
loneliness, regrets, anger and blessedness put
together. I believed firmly that God through
Jesus Christ was protecting me in my struggle
against the vocal cord cancer. Some pages of
the unedited diary are inserted on the left side
I had a bout with cancer of the larynx in 1990
up to 1992 when I had my radiation cobalt
treatment and finally complete remission. This
was followed by a heart attack with two cardiac
failures and angioplasty procedure in 1998 and finally, a triple by-pass in 1999 after
the angioplasty failed.
Quoting my unedited diary August 31 to September 6, 1992, My cancer doctor
is Dr. Roy Sessions, Jr and Dr. Michael Kuettel (radiologist). I had no
feeling of panic. No anger to God for betraying me. No control of anything
at the hand of the doctor. The tumor was actually inch along the left
side of my vocal cord. Never thought of dying. Stick to the meditation,
prayer, & love of my children. Not scared to go to heaven if God wills it.
The larynx is the upper portion of the windpipe ("trachea") which has two main
functions: conducting air down into the lungs,
and producing speech in humans. The human
larynx is composed of 3 areas: supraglottis,
glottis, and subglottis. The glottis is literally
the "voicebox" and contains the paired vocal
cords. It is my voicebox that was afflicted by
the cancer. The larynx is made up of the vocal
cords and surrounding support structures, it is
essential in producing normal human voice and
also helps prevent food and liquid from entering into the lungs (web reference).
I was born in a family of eight, 3 girls and 5 boys and grow up in a village in the
Philippines with a normal upbringing. I remember American missionaries holding
prayer meetings and singing hymns in our home. That was my early introduction to
the Christian way of life that guided me to follow what is right and acceptable in the
eyes of other Christians and our Lord. I faltered every now and then but always
have come back on the right track and always requested for forgiveness.
I was brought up and tutored as a
Protestant. In high school and during
college I enjoyed singing in the church
choir and continued singing while on
assignments in some countries. Im
privilege to sing solos in Church concerts
and have thanked God endlessly for the
wonderful gift He gave me.
I neglected singing as part of my life while
pursuing my career. Now there are
varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit;
and there are varieties of service, but
the same Lord; and there are varieties
of activities, but it is the same God
who empowers them all in every one.
To each is given the manifestation of
the Spirit for the common good. For to
one is given through the Spirit the
utterance of wisdom, and to another
the utterance on knowledge according
to the same Spirit. 1Corinthians 12:4-
At the start of my cobalt radiation treatment I asked God to help me, save me and
I believed He did not forsake me. This was a very strong inner feeling, that I even
teased Mr Cancer to do his worst with me. My strength was believing in Jesus
Christ, the guardian angels, the doctors and nurses, my family and friends who
were cheering in my corner of the boxing ring providing me all the power to win.
I missed singing in church for a few years for luck of opportunity but I did promised
the Lord Ill sing again once Im cured. It took a while for me to find the church and
choir, but I did - in the Central United Methodist Church in North Fairfax Drive,
Virginia ([email protected]). I was so blest to find God in the company of loving
church members who accepted me with open arms and there was Reverent Richard
E. Cobb who through his Sunday sermons nurtured my love for the church. The
choir director, Barbara P. Cackler and the choir were the closest to my heart. The
church members are one big family and
many of them participated in volunteer
services in the community. When my wife
Eppie and I left for the Philippines to retire
in 2005, the church held a special Sunday
service-dedication for me that was so
touching and memorable that is itched in my soul forever. Above left are some
choir members farewell messages.
Im married to Eppie Rodriguez who gifted me with three beautiful girls (Amy, Jo
Ann & Luisa) and a boy (Francis), all of them are blessed with their own families
and together gifted us grandparents 6 lovable grandchildren namely, Mikey,
Chesca, Sophia, Isabel, Rapha and Nico. Eppies parents devoted their work and
lives serving the Lord through the United Church of Christ in the Philippines in
Mindanao with Silliman University in Negros Oriental as their family base.
My profession as an agricultural consultant started at the International Rice
Research Institute (1965 1969), which in the later years of my career, as a rice-
based agronomist, had provided me the opportunity to implement development
projects in 17 other countries funded by different International Institutions like the
World Bank, USAID, UNDP, ADB and private organizations like CARE Philippines and
Winrock International. Some assignments allowed me as well to have my four
children visitation privileges. In 1992, my wife and I joined and stayed with our
eldest daughter Amy, in Arlington, Virginia, USA that served as my work base
where we resided up to 2005 before retiring in the Philippines.
In 1991 during implementation of my USAID contract in Belize among the Maya
Indians and Creoles in Central America, I started having frequent sore throat and
so often, lost my voice for a few hours that
extended into days, depending on how
much talking I do during farmers training
sessions. Then, in the same year while on
vacation in the Philippines, the sore throat,
hoarse voice, and the unbearable pin-prick
pain that developed in the region of the
vocal cord became worst. I was diagnosed
in Manila by Dr. Bautista at the Makati
Medical Center to have cancer of the larynx
at its early stage. He suggested that I go
back to the US immediately for treatment
where medical facilities are much better.
The Manila finding was confirmed in
Georgetown University Hospital,
Department of Radiation Medicine. Dr. Roy
Sessions, Jr was my primary physician all
throughout my treatment period of 33
days using cobalt radiation therapy. This was the start of my journey fighting pain,
hopelessness and fear. This was also the time when for the first time in my life I
was serious about my relationship with God. Even while my wife, Amy and her
husband, Geosh were always nearby, I find myself often times so alone but there
was always true comfort and feeling of safety when communing with the Lord. The
pin-prick pain on my vocal cord, followed by nausea, and coughing become worst
after each radiation exposure for two to four hours daily, I wrestled with such
unending misery. I am comforted curling myself into a ball like a baby and
imagining sheltered inside the womb of my mother and talking to the Lord most of
The technician would prepare me alone in a room for the radiation treatment where
I was instructed to lie down inside a chamber like bed. Then the infected vocal cord
is targeted utilizing a computerized prepared program before the radiation cobalt
treatment is administered.
Quoting my unedited diary, I wrote (September 7 13, 1992) Nobody can give
me comfort when in pain. Music helps a lot. I did cry my heart out not for
pity sake but regret and remorse for a lot of reasons. In radiation, you lie
down & look at a big machine on top of you with eye-like opening pointing
towards my throat.
Friends in different countries offered prayers that provided me peace and happiness
knowing I am loved. One family friend even promised to nag the Lord to get me
well. My sister Linda in California had the church where she is a member pray for
my recovery. The entire Gorrez and Rodriguez clans in their own ways extended
prayers and unending support to my family.
My cancer radiation cobalt treatment
started 8 July 1992 and lasted for 33 days
excluding Sundays when Im allowed to
recover from pain and stress. The
significant event that happened during my
cancer sickness was sharing with others the
strong faith that I did not realized I have
that I will survive with Gods help and I
started reading the Bible over and over. I
never tire of those many passages that
relates to my own experiences in life and I
find fulfilment knowing God is on my side. The feeling of security and survival is
very strong within me. While other patients look so discourage while waiting for the
same cancer treatment, I was looking happy most of the time and did aimed to
cheer those I purposely get in contact with in the hospital patients waiting room. A
visiting Priest who saw me one time asked, are you seeing someone and I told him,
no, I am a patient myself. After the 33 days radiation treatment ending in 21
August 1992, I was given a certificate by the Georgetown University Hospital,
Department of Radiation Medicine staff.
Trusting His Words: The bible was and is and ever will be my guide and shield
against all that is negative confronting my life. Even though I walk through the
valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your
rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4. For I am convinced that
neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor
the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in
all creaton, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Jesus
Christ our Lord. ROMANS 8:37-39.
Slowly I resumed my work as a rice-based agronomist consultant after 1992.
Volunteer in Technical Assistance (VITA) sent me to the Philippines in 1993 and
USAID through Winrock International contracted me that started as a volunteer
consultant in Nicaragua of a Farmer to Farmer program and later as a USAID
Program Adviser of a Rice National Program between 1995 to 1998
HEART ATTACKED 1998
It was December 1998 when I had the
heart attack, six years after my cancer in
1992. I climbed a 25 30 foot lived pine
tree in our backyard (photo at left) and
cut the top 5 foot main primary stem,
then collected small stones, filled up a
bucket with the cut pine tree top erected
at the center. While cutting the top portion
of the tree, I experienced sudden
dizziness, cold sweat, numbness of my left
arm and then, shortness of breathing. But
I completed the Christmas tree set-up and
placed it in a corner of the living room.
This time I was agonizing from breast pain
while praying the Lords Prayer. I told my
wife to call 911 and between 5 or 10
minutes the ambulance arrived. I was
administered first-aid treatment while
lying down on the floor and a huge black
man said, you will not go during my watch brother, Ill take care of you. I never
had the opportunity to thank that gentle giant of a man personally but have done
so in my heart. Being alert I took two aspirin immediately when the breast pain
Upon reaching Arlington Hospital, I was already getting unconscious but conscious
enough to know I was surrounded by medical doctors, nurses, my wife, Amy my
eldest daughter and her husband, Geosh. A ventilator machine was administered to
me that took over my breathing and relieved me a little bit of my physical pain and
stress. Before I passed out completely, I saw my wife and I said in silence love
of my life. It was a way of saying good bye in case I go.
During those first-5 days of my stay in the hospital, everything that took place was
unknown to me. That first night I was administered electric shock treatment twice
as my heart stop completely. As soon as my heart beat came back, my medical
doctor (Dr. Antonio Parente) right away conducted an angioplasty procedure which
involved the insertion of a catheter through the artery in my leg that showed in
detail on a monitor the blood flowing towards the heart. My left coronary artery had
a 99% blockage preventing blood to reach the heart as told to me by the doctor
and my eldest daughter, Amy.
Dr. Parente inserted a flexible metal device
called stent through my leg artery and
maneuvered it where the blockage was
located near the heart. The stent is like a
mesh-wired pipe that is fitted inside the
artery to prevent that portion from
collapsing. After the stent insertion I was
told by the doctor that I had two serious
cardiac failures and the third one could be
fatal. I told the doctor, I didnt feel any of
that at all because during the cardiac arrest
I saw my own mortal body surrounded by
The procedure took place after I was
normalized with the electric shock
treatment and Im not aware of what
transpired. That particular week, my
daughters Jo Ann living in the Philippines,
Lisa coming from Germany and my son,
Francis from Australia, all arrived to be by
my side. Amy, my eldest daughter with her
husband, Geosh and my wife were all there right from my admission in the hospital.
It was at this stage of unconsciousness during or after the two cardiac failures that
I vividly experienced what I addressed as OUT OF BODY EXPERIENCE (OBE).
Quoting my diary, I first saw these multi-coloured bright yellow, orange
and red of various shades of floating leaves forming before me. As if I was
invited to ride on it as it formed a tunnel shape transport that carried me
through a time frame and space. It was so comfortable, no restlessness,
pain, problems but plain happiness and joy. It was so full of beauty I never
behold in my whole life.
I was brought into a valley with panoramic view of a lake, farm land with
herd of sheep, and dancing water falls. Then I saw all my living loved-ones
belonging to my own family briefly passing in front of my sight. All of them
were looking happy and secured. Coming back they told me they never
believe Ill go and leave them.
It was also at this time, I came face-
to-face with gentle looking people
dressed in white robes and one
particular man that was taller than
the rest with long flowing hair and has
a loving aura extended his hands
towards me but he didnt say
anything. I said to him, please let me
go back because I want to see my
grandchildren growing and wished as
well, to help farmers grow their crops.
The MAN just smiled at me and gave
me a blessed yes answer. Then we
drifted apart and I found myself back
into my earthly sickbed body.
It was a very serene, peaceful and
comforting journey without any feeling of
fear or pain but only love, happiness and
joy that accompanied me. It was so full of
beauty I never behold in my whole life.
I was spared of the physical pain and discomfort experienced by most heart attack
patients while I go in and out of consciousness during the first 5 days of my own
heart attack ordeal. My doctor and few hospital staff told me the events when I had
the cardiac failure and how I was revived. I thank them all who were there for their
help and shared with them my own OBE. The scientific world has limited or no
technical explanation on what I narrated.
Before I departed, I saw my sick and earthly body being treated by the medical
team and I believed it was my spirit belonging to another part of my life that
travelled in that beautiful place so full of beauty, peace, and love.
I read and read the bible, I still do it to fully understand the words of God spoken to
the Prophets in the old testaments and through Jesus Christ who in spirit is forever
with us. This is the words of God that will never change my faith in Him and this I
believed. He showed me there is no fear in dying and He is ever present to
Since Christ lives within you, even though your body will die because of
sin, your spirit is alive because you have been made right with God. The
Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as He
raised Christ from the dead, He will give life to your mortal body by this
same Spirit living in you. Romans 8:10 11.
What can I say about the OBE I experienced from the sick physical earthly body of
mine that journeyed in another realm and feeling free, loved, and happy beyond
words, no feeling of pain or fear at all, traveling and beholding the beauty of what I
saw. Except for me to believe, that it is my spiritual body manifesting itself in
another dimension, which is the spiritual gift of God to me through Jesus Christ,
that allowed me to go to another realm (world). I have to believe it and my faith
has made me stronger that love alone and learning to forgive are the only things
we need in this world to deserve that love and forgiveness waiting for all of us in
the other realm.
I learned to lean on Him comfortably and have choicen His Words, the bible, as my
daily bread. I understand my choice because I saw the suffering and cruelty in this
world in my 35 years of agricultural work in 17 countries trying to help farmers and
others produce better crops even just to provide meals on their tables.
Faith that doesnt show itself by good deeds is no faith at allit is dead
and useless. Just as the body is dead without a spirit, so also faith is dead
without good deeds. James 2:17 & 26.
The Lord fully knows what transpired in my life the past 82 years and I feel so
comfortable to request for His help and guidance for me and others. Yes, the
privilege was mine to have touched the life of many Christians, Muslims,
unbelievers, and detractors in my line of work strengthen with the gift of love from
God through Jesus Christ.
You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven
together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Everyday
of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a
single day had past. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God!
TRIPLE BY-PASS AND THE ANGELS
Yes, I was slowly backed to good health after the angioplasty procedure and I
started doing all sorts of exercises to hasten my recovery. I walked, run, played
basketball and frequently used the gym. Then, it happened while playing
basketball I experienced a sharp breast pain and heavy laboured shortness of
breath that was getting worst each day. This occurred 6 -7 months after the
angioplasty procedure and I was aware some patients have developed artery
blockage in the same location, according to medical findings.
The x-ray result showed my left artery was blocked
again with fatty plaques where the stent was
embedded. Dr. Antonio Parente strongly advised
that I should have the By-Pass operation
immediately, which took place in 1999.
I was prepared by the Arlington Hospital medical
team for the operation and the next thing I
remember was getting sleepy. Upon opening my
heart, the team of doctors decided to utilize the
arteries in both my left and right legs to reconnect
my damaged heart arteries. After the triple-by-
pass performed on me, I was brought to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) room to
I was barely conscious and starting to wake up
when I noticed my son-in-law Geosh beside my
bed. I extended my hand to him which he held
comfortably and while in that state of
consciousness, I saw hundreds of tiny stars
dancing all over him. Then I doze off to sleep
again. Not a single word was uttered between us
before and after this short episode while in the
same time frame, my daughter Amy (Geoshs wife)
was just sitting in one corner of the room.
When I woke up, Amy approach me and asked, Dad, did you see anything when
you were awake earlier, and I said, yes, I saw tiny dancing stars enveloping
Geosh. Amy started crying and said, I saw also tiny stars dancing all over you
while you were sleeping. Again, Ill say, there was no exchange of words or
conversation among us until after I woke up and Amy asked that question.
I went to the operating room so confident Ill be alright with the Lord by my side
and have prayed for Him to guide the hands of the doctors. It was an easy half-day
procedure as if I have just come out of a heavy physical exercise and was so tired
to do anything except to sleep for a while.
But, what about those tiny dancing stars? The scene was so beautiful to behold with
such comfort, trust, peace and faith abounding in my heart. I believe in Guardian
Angels I come across in many occasions on my reading the bible. God himself sent
an angel to tell Joseph that his wife is favoured to bare a son who will be the
saviour of this world. And an angel appeared in the tomb of Jesus Christ to tell the
three women that He has risen.
Since angels are spirits rather than physical beings, they dont have to be
visible at all (Colossians 1:16) On the other hand, their appearance is
sometimes in dazzling white and blazing glory (Matthew 28:2-4). The
angel that rolled back the stone from Christs tomb was radiating dazzling
light (Matthew 28:3; Luke 24:4). Angels are spirits (Hebrews 1:14), like
the soul of man, but without a physical body.
The Book of Enoch, which is included in the holy scriptures of the Ethiopian
Orthodox Tewahedo Church. 1 Enoch 100:5 declares that God will set a
guard of holy angels over all the righteous. The Qur'an says in Al Ra'd
13:11: "For each [person], there are angels in front of him and behind him,
who guard him by Allah's command."
However, the Bible is clear that guardian angels do exist. Psalm 91:11-12
declares about God: "For he will command his angels concerning you to
guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you
will not strike your foot against a stone."
GOD BLESS US ALL
Grandpa Frank Gorrez