Michael Landon’s Daughter Speaks Out
At age 8, Jennifer Landon lost her father, actor Michael Landon, to cancer. An Emmy Award-winning actress in her own right, Jennifer is speaking out about the disease that took her father’s life.
In a new Cancer Project television spot and print ad, Landon explains that she remembers her dad, star of Bonanza, Little House on the Prairie, and Highway to Heaven, as a particularly strong man. But he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and died three months later.
“Today, we know a lot about preventing cancer,” Landon tells viewers. “If you smoke, quit. Eat more vegetables and fruits. Have more vegetarian and vegan meals. These steps are powerful—for you and your whole family.”
At least one-third of annual cancer deaths in the United States are due to dietary factors. Increased fruit and vegetable consumption can reduce cancer risk, but less than one-third of U.S. adults eat fruit at least two times a day, and only about 27 percent eat vegetables at least three times daily, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Large studies in England and Germany have shown that vegetarians are about 40 percent less likely to develop cancer compared with meat eaters.
“Bringing this groundbreaking information to the general public can prevent other families from suffering the same loss mine has,” said Landon.
A three-time Emmy winner for her dual roles as Gwen Norbeck and Cleo Babbitt on the daytime drama As the World Turns, Landon began her professional acting career at the age of 5, when she was cast in the final episodes of Highway to Heaven.
The new TV and print ads can be seen on The Cancer Project’s Web site, CancerProject.org.