Adventist media personality Dr James Wright, 89—well-known for his health talks on Australian TV and radio as well as his articles and books—underwent an operation for bowel cancer at the Sydney Adventist Hospital today.
Doctors have advised that the surgery went according to plan. “It’s all looking very positive,” said an email to friends and supporters from Dr Wright’s son, David Knight, “He will be in the San for a number of days, feeling absolutely lousy, as he is not too good with anaesthetics. We do ask for some privacy for him to rest and recover.”
According to Sydney’s Daily Telegraph newspaper, Doc Wright—whose real name is Dr John Knight—has had to confront bowel cancer just as he was given the all-clear after a tough battle against throat cancer, for which he was treated in 2012.
“I’ve been a GP all my life and I’ve never seen one person get two aggressive cancers within five years. I’ve seen thousands of patients—but that’s just how it goes,” he told the newspaper.
Apart from his appearances as Dr James Wright on daytime television and Sydney radio and moonlighting as “Dolly Doctor” for a teenage girls’ magazine, Dr Knight has written regularly for Signs of the Times and was a staple of the Record InFocus program on Hope Channel. Dr Knight is also the author of a number of health books still being shared by Adventist literature evangelists.
Conscious of the high costs of aged care, Dr Knight, together with his son, David, runs a number of not-for-profit aged care facilities in Sydney and Queensland with places set aside specifically for residents with limited financial capacity. He is 2017’s NSW Senior Australian of the Year and was awarded the Order of Australia (AM) in 1998.
A committed Adventist, Dr Knight has consistently practised the lifestyle principles he’s promoted to his patients and the public: he doesn’t drink or smoke, eats a plant-based diet and exercises half an hour each day.
“John Knight bought the attention of Australians to health in the ‘70s and ‘80s—he started them thinking about health. And he’s making an incredible contribution with his retirement homes,” said Dr Paul Rankin, one of the Adventist Church’s discipleship team health specialists. “Our prayers are with him and his family.”
Dr James Wright in his first appearance on Record InFocus after being successfully treated for throat cancer in 2013.