Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian told an unusual story about his friend Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead. Lemmy died in December 2015 after being diagnosed with cancer at age 70.
Asked if Lemmy looked sick in the months before his death, Ian said:
“No, he was not so sick at that point. But it was not as healthy as it had been. He was diagnosed with diabetes at some point. I remember he had stopped drinking Jack and Coke because of the sugar. In the rock world this was giant news. He had traded for vodka.”
It was then that Ian revealed the story about the time a cigarette prevented Lemmy from having amputated toes. “He literally almost lost a few toes because he still did not know about diabetes. They had gone black because of the lack of circulation, “Ian said.
“He went to see a doctor in LA and he said ‘Oh, you need to amputate those fingers right away’. He decided to go to London to see another doctor for a second opinion. They said the same thing. He needed to operate, it was an emergency. Then he went to work and was smoking a cigarette in the operating room. Someone said he could not smoke there, they asked if he was crazy. He replied, ‘If I’m going to lose a toe, I’ll smoke a cigarette.’ Even so, they did not. He just walked away and did not operate. So he ended up seeing another doctor who said he would be okay, just changing his diet a little. ”
Lemmy changed his eating habits and did not have to operate. “A cigarette literally stopped him from having amputated toes,” Scott added. “That’s when he stopped taking Jack and Coke. The doctor said, ‘Start taking diet coke you will not have to amputate your toes,’ he laughed.
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