A cancer diagnosis is never an easy thing.
From the first day to remission the process is emotionally and physically difficult.
Each patient handles chemotherapy and radiation treatments differently, but now all patients at the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center at West Virginia University Hospitals will end them the same way, ringing a bell signaling the close of a chapter.
"This is really exciting," said Thomas DeWitt as he readied to ring the bell Wednesday after his final chemo treatment. "They kind of assured me everything is going to be ok so this is going to be a good day for me. Tomorrow will be another good day and I'll be done with it."
In March, DeWitt received a diagnosis nobody wants to hear, he had stage-four throat cancer.
For the past eight weeks he's undergone chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
"When you ring that bell your done, you finished, and that's the light at the end of the tunnel so to speak, you do that and you know your in good shape." he said.
Just a few patients have rung the bell since it was hung last week. It was purchased for patients by hematology fellows.
"We wanted to give back to the patients, because they are our true teachers," said hematology fellow Brendan Curley. "They can ring the bell as an end of a journey."
For DeWitt chemotherapy and radiation are just now ending, and his fight against cancer is not over, but he, with a smile on his face and some help from his doctors, knows he's getting closer.
"It's a wonderful place, it really is," DeWitt said. "You kind of get a family felling. It's a happy time. When you get done you know tomorrow is going to be a better day."