Beloved Fort Bragg soldier loses battle with cancer

Sgt. Jack Stillman and his sons (GoFundMe)

FORT BRAGG, N.C. — A Fort Bragg soldier beloved by many has lost his battle with cancer, WTVD reports.

Sgt. Jack Stillman died Saturday. He was 23.

The past year and a half has been rocky for the Stillman family since Jack was diagnosed with an aggressive form of lymphoma. He was in and out of the hospital too many times to count. Each time, receiving chemotherapy. At times, the family saw positive results.

“‘I’m not going to die,'” his wife, Alina Stillman, recalled Jack saying. “‘They can’t tell me I’m going to die.’ You know, he was like, ‘we’ve gotten this far. Treatments have worked before.’ But the issue was the treatments just didn’t last.”

But, his body changed drastically during his battle.

“Two years ago, I could never even do a half grip around his arm,” Alina said. “Well, all it took was for me to go like this around his arm to completely be able to touch my fingers.”

Jack was a true fighter. His unit at Fort Bragg gave him a signed pair of boxing gloves when he was first diagnosed.

Alina, the couple’s two sons, and other family members hoped he’d become cancer-free one day – he started a new chemotherapy just last Tuesday – but the treatments were unsuccessful.

But over the last several days, his condition worsened and he eventually passed away on Saturday.

“The last few days of his life, it was like, the disease just completely demolished him,” Alina said.