Man Joins Army to Save Wife’s Life – It’s All About the Health Care

Imagine for a moment being laid off from your job of 20 years and losing medical coverage for your family. Then imagine that your wife, stricken with ovarian cancer, is fighting for her very life. What would you do?

Faced with that very scenario, Bill Caudle took the only option left to him. He enlisted in the Army to take advantage of the health insurance, which kicked in once he left for basic training. Mr. Caudle, at 39 years-old, is now obligated to the Army for the next 4 years. A few years ago it couldn’t have happened, but in recent years the enlistment age has been raised to 42.

Just when his loved ones need his presence, his strength, and his moral support the most, this American husband and father will be absent. In what most certainly had to be a gut-wrenching decision, Bill Caudle sacrificed that role in order to see that his wife’s medical needs would be met as she battles — for the third time — a form of cancer that kills almost 15,000 women in the United States each year. 

It was a matter of life and death.

Bill Caudle is one of a growing number of people to join the military for the health care package that comes with it. Between the proverbial rock and hard place, he did what needed to be done. But not all of the 14,000 people who are losing their health insurance every day can do the same. Not all are healthy enough or young enough themselves; not all are married to someone who is. 

According to the Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal, Bill and Michelle Caudle paid little attention to the raging battle over health care reform this year and have no desire to become activists for the cause. One can hardly blame them; they’ve got plenty on their plate as it is. 

They did not seek the spotlight, but the Caudle family’s story speaks volumes. 

Bill Caudle serves his country and his family while Michelle Caudle fights for her life, their 3 children carrying on as best they can. Meanwhile in Washington, partisan politics goes on as usual and health care reform remains a political football, with precious little concern for the lives at stake. 

Health care reform can no longer wait…


About ovarian cancer: In 2009, approximately 21,550 women in the United States will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and 14,500-15,000 of them will lose their lives to this silent killer. Unfortunately, because the signs and symptoms can be subtle, many women do not seek help until the cancer has spread.

In 2007, Congress approved Johanna’s Law that awarded three year’s worth of funding to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to increase awareness of the symptoms of gynecologic cancers. But the funding is about to run out. You can help fight ovarian cancer by urging your representative to become a co-sponsor the the reauthorization of Johanna’s Law: The Gynecologic Cancer Education and Awareness Act. Sign the petition: Bring Awareness to Ovarian Cancer.


Related Reading:

Greedy Insurers Reconsider Dumping the ‘Dogs’ after Public Outrage

Another Blow for Battered Women: Health Insurers Deny Coverage for Victims

Toddler Too Small for Health Insurance

Being a Woman is not a Pre-Existing Condition

6 Shockers About Women’s Health Care

Risk Aids or Health Insurance: Rape Victim Deemed Uninsurable for Seeking Treatment for Rape

Connect with me on Twitter @AnnPietrangelo

Photo: Wout J Reinders


.8 years ago

We will place this story with the rest of care2 members on our site. Join us in the fight for a honest program built by the people.
Ok ,Mr. President are you ready for round 2, because now the people want to read your 1900 pages of Bill before it is passed into law.
See Obama vs. Massingale page 26
Henry Massingale
for main page click on this link below look for page1 american dream on

Christian R.
Christian R8 years ago

Thank Senator Harry Reid for his commitment to the public option:

Joe must go! petition:

Lieberman betrayals:

jc Mason
Nynah Mason8 years ago

Add your name to every on line petition you can find. Write a letter to your Senators and Representatives and call them as well. If you can afford it, make a donation to those persons or organizations backing health care reform and the "Public Option." Vow to never vote for any politician who votes or works against this enormously important issue. Work to defeat those who are working against you, me and every other American. Help bring this country out of the Dark Ages.
"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Ghandi

Carole D.
Carole Dunn8 years ago

This is just another of thousands of stories that should make every American hang their head in shame. It's absolutely barbaric that a country like ours, with all its riches, should not have universal heatlh care. Our Declaration of Independence says that we have the right to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." As far as I'm concerned that says it all. You can't have life without access to health care. Americans who are against universal health care have a soul sickness that no amount of health care could possible cure.

I find it very interesting that here in the bible belt the majority of people are against real health care reform. People get really mad when I tell them to their face that if they are against anyone having access to health care they couldn't possibly be Christians.

Deborah W.
.8 years ago

If the right to healthcare is at least as essential a right as the right to a public education, then why the furor? Could it be the result of funding from and campaigns by greedy

Jane K, it comes down to eugenics. There are some of us that others feel shouldn't exist because not only do we have a pre-existing condition, we have a disability. The health insurance want the "right" to effectively "kill off" as many with disabilities as possible in order to get rid of the genetics that causes it. Most of all, those most affected, the poor, elderly, and disabled, are the most likely to suffer denial of their claims, and some might die as a result, some are forced into living outdoors where they will certainly die from the elements. There should be no question why the conservative Republicans want to keep the present system. The health insurance companies are effectively eliminating much of the Democrat voting base, which is made up of elderly, poor, and disabled, and people who are simply open-minded and progressive, if not rich. So, all in all, the present day health insurance companies serve the double duty purpose of the conservative Republicans (read fascists) of killing off the "weak and defective," and causing others to go broke, necessitating bankruptcy filings. So these companies are helping the fascists of this country in class warfare. I actually got kicked off Huffington Post making this obvious observation.

Kathy V.
Kathy V8 years ago

Hearing so many stories like this one causes one to seriously wonder how we can possibly continue to tolerate our current health care system. When I have had "discussions," (or rather,arguments), about health care reform with the "conservatives," the points they consistently regurgitate, as if they are programmed (brainwashed) are as follows: 1) all the "illegals" will get free care, 2) health care is not a right, 3) you can't trust the government to run anything right, 4) the government will decide who lives or dies, 5) it's SOCIALISM, 6) the government can't tell me what to do, 7) we'll lose our freedoms, 8) the government is too big, 9) it's unconstitutional, and more which elude my mind at the moment.

All of the above are not true. Health care is a NEED, the government is charged with the general welfare (which includes health), people here illegally are not the issue, Medicare is "socialism," etc. The people need to be able to choose the type of health care they want, but now we don't have that choice. I do not choose for-profit health insurance companies who indeed may choose whether I live or die. If we truly care about our "neighbor," we will make sure that quality, affordable health care is available to all citizens! SINGLE PAYER will do that. And the health insurance companies can still take those who want them. This is clearly a moral issue, but as it stands now with politicians being paid off by corporations, it's money over morals.

Cherise W.
Cherise W.8 years ago

The U.S. is the only industrialized nation in the world that doesn't provide national health care for its citizens! What shame! What greed! When people say they don't want the government between them & their doctor, how in the world could they want a profit driven company (insurance companies) smack dab in the middle???? Cancelling their coverage for pre-existing conditions ( wouldn't THEY need it the most?!), denying treatment ordered by doctors, demanding money that most don't have, and then folks do without the care that they most desperately need! Shame on America! Single Payer, it's the ONLY way!

Marilyn K.
Marilyn K8 years ago

When people disclose what havoc their medical conditions have caused them and their families it only brings to the forefront the need for health care reform and a public option so that affordable, quality care be had by all. No one is asking for a free ride from our government as the Republican Party would have you believe. The key words are affordable and quality!

Dale P.
Dale P8 years ago

Many of the previous comments were sarcastic or cruel, others were sympathetic and understanding. I can only say that I pity their plight and hope that there actions only lead to good. May God bless you Bill and Michelle Caudle and good luck. As always and awaiting change, Dale P. Patterson

Bev M.
Bev M8 years ago