Doctor: Etta James Terminally Ill

Her doctor asks for prayers
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Suggested by Just_Dave
Posted Dec 17, 2011 12:40 PM CST

(Newser) – Blues legend Etta James is now in the end stages of leukemia, reports the Riverside Press-Enterprise. Her doctor says the illness was declared incurable two weeks ago, and it's compounded by the singer's kidney failure and dementia. “I am Southern and Christian and would just ask for the prayers of her fans and friends,” says live-in physician Dr. Elaine James (no relation). James' classics include "At Last" and "Tell Mama."

Unfortunate side note: The doctor made the news public outside a court hearing where a fight is under way over the 73-year-old James' million-dollar estate. Her two sons are fighting their stepfather for control, and they tell Reuters they're not sure the doctor's grim diagnosis is accurate. They do agree their mother is seriously ill, however, and want her moved to a hospital rather than the current at-home setup. The doctor's $30,000-a-month salary has emerged as a point of contention during the hearing, notes the P-E. (Read more Etta James stories.)

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