When Work Gets Too Personal: A Pathologist Watches Her Dad Die From Cancer
Julie Randolph-Habecker followed her father's footsteps into the field of science. He was a pathologist, diagnosing patients from behind the microscope. She became a research pathologist, exploring what was behind the disease. However, when her dad fell ill with lung cancer, that meant understanding too much about what was killing him.
Julie remembers looking through a microscope at her father's cancer cells. "Everywhere I looked there were cancer cells. And they all looked bizarre and evil. I knew immediately when I looked at that slide, it was horrible."
Today, Julie is the director of experimental histopathology at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Since her dad died, Julie has studied the type of tumor that made him sick. Gabriel Spitzer talks with Julie about the experience of losing her father and how it affected her career in science.