A Fort Worth doctor diagnosed A.C. “Ace” Cook with Stage IV pancreatic cancer two years and nine months ago.
Cook was given six months to live — max.
Instead, the outspoken owner of the Bull Ring ice cream shop in the Stockyards did what he does best — he bellowed to anyone within earshot that he would beat this damned cancer and prove that damned doctor wrong.
Sure enough, Cook went to M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, took chemotherapy and experimental treatments, and did an impressive job at slapping around the Big C.
But I’m just now returning from visiting the larger than life Texas character at Harris Hospital and it’s not looking good. Cook was forced to take a break from his chemo treatments six weeks ago, and he was supposed to get started back on them this week. But his health deteriorated so much in August he wasn’t able to continue treatments.
Now, it doesn’t look like he’ll leave Harris Hospital alive.
I was hoping to talk to him a little bit, but he’s on so much pain medication he can’t converse — believe me, you know Cook is sick if he doesn’t feel like talking.
Good ‘ol Ace — farm boy turned junk collector turned commercial airplane pilot turned pawnshop owner turned early Texas art collector — appears to be nearing his final destination.
Hopefully when he moves on from this life he’ll pass through a brilliant Frank Reaugh sunset.
On the other hand, I hope Cook recovers enough to read this post, which will make him madder than a hornet when he sees he’s been all but pronounced dead. He’ll say something like, “That sumbitch Prince is trying to bury me alive for chrissakes! I’m gonna make that no-account bum eat his words, and walk out of this hospital on my own own two feet, gotdammit.”
I hope he makes me eat my words. C’mon, Ace, make me eat my words.