Pendant by Wil Vandever (Navajo)


Wilbert Vandever April 11, 1951 - October 29, 2018  Obituary at Find-a-Grave 

As I had relayed, in real time, previously, Wil had been battling colon cancer for the last 5 years or so of his life.  He fought valiantly and endured many rounds of chemotherapy.  His being diabetic only complicated issues further.

Through it all he tried to keep working. In addition to the usual discomforts and indignities that chemo brings, it made his hands numb making it very difficult to perform the intricate work, particularly the trademark coiled wire that encircles the bezels on his cabochons.

In late 2015 and early 2016 he was off chemo and starting to put out a small amount of work, some of which found its way to this page.  He thought he was over the hump. He was starting to get his feeling back, was feeling pretty good, and his life started to regain some normalcy.

Sadly, in late summer 2017, the cancer returned as a Stage 4 diagnosis and he resumed treatment. In mid September he was told it had metastasized to both his lungs and stomach.  He discontinued treatment. In the face of such discouraging news, he continued to display an admirable spirit and determination to keep going and enjoy his family for whatever time may remain.