Ron Cephas Jones is a "walking miracle"
The 65-year-old actor was very emotional when he returned to 'This Is Us' to film a final episode as William Hill before the show ends for good and he gave the cast and crew a tearful speech as he reflected on their help and support when he underwent a double lung transplant in 2020
23 May 2022
According to Entertainment Weekly, he told those on set: "You cats held me when I was struggling and you didn't let me go. You've been there for a very difficult part of my life. I'm a walking miracle."
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The 'Law & Order: Organized Crime' star previously admitted he was in "total denial" when he was diagnosed with emphysema - a progressive condition where damage to the lungs deprives the blood of oxygen - and continued smoking up to 12 cigarettes a day.
He said: "I was in total denial. told myself that it would pass, or that I was just getting older. I was afraid and didn't want to change what I wasn't ready to change."
But a year later, in 2017, he was filming 'This Is Us' when he became short of breath and ultimately had to resuscitate him with an oxygen tank while waiting for an ambulance to arrive.
Following his secret health battle, Ron underwent a double transplant in May 2020, and spent almost two months in hospital on and off a ventilator as he learned to breathe, eat, and walk again, and he was driven by a desire to work on stage again.
He reflected: "My whole life has been the stage. The idea of not performing again seemed worse to me than death."
And his family were happy he had the operation.
His daughter, actress Jasmine Cephas Jones, has said: "You can see in his eyes that he made the right decision.
"I feel like I have my dad back."