Bassist Peter Iwers of Swedish metallers IN FLAMES recently spoke to NBCNews.com about his involvement with Barncancerfonden— a Swedish charity that fights to end childhood cancer and to ensure that affected children, teens and their families receive the care and support that they need.
Asked if he has had any moving experiences while working with the charity, Peter said: “There’s been a few. This one time we went to the hospital and met a kid, he was a huge IN FLAMES fan and he passed away about a month after we went to visit him. Recently, I got to know this kid who really affected me, and he wasn’t a child. He was nineteen years old, still very young. He found [out] he had cancer one day just out of the blue — his whole body was filled with cancer — and it regressed and he was told that he was better. He was better for about six months and then he went back in and just collapsed and it had spread all over and they told him there’s nothing we can do, you’re going to die. He was a big IN FLAMES fan, and as it turned out, we had a mutual friend and we were in my summer house with Björn [Gelotte], our guitar player, and our mutual friend, and he said, ‘I know this guy.’ We went to visit him, just sat down and talk to him, and for 19 years old, he had the wisdom of an old man. He had accepted that he was about to die and he had made peace with it. He told us such stories about the things that he was most pissed about. He said, ‘I’m not afraid to die but I’m so pissed I never got to do this, I never got to do that.’ We hung out with him that day and then he came down to Gothenburg and we went out to dinner with him and hung out with him and [he] made me realize stuff that you never think about, you take for granted. He had his best friends, his family and me and Björn. We just sat there listening to this guy who had the wisdom of a 400-year-old and it was so touching to talk to him. At the end of the night, he broke down and cried but before that he was so strong and so powerful and that [it] really touched me. He passed away four days later. It was horrible.”
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