“Zeno” Festival set to benefit local musician battling cancer

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LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)- One local Grammy Award winning musician in Acadiana is fighting for his life as he battles his third cancer diagnosis.

Tonight, News 10 shares the innovative treatment that doctors are hopeful will cure his cancer completely.

Lee Allen Zeno is battling multiple myeloma. He’s previously beaten colon cancer and lymphoma. But you wouldn’t know it because he hasn’t missed a beat.

“From what he is telling me, the type of cancer that I got ears from the bone out,” Zeno said. “It’s cancer of a type of white blood cells that affects the bone marrow and as it progresses it will affect other organs.”

Karen Rue is a registered nurse who helps Mr. Lee navigate his appointments.

Next month he will be undergoing stem cell therapy at Tulane Medical Center in New Orleans.

“His stem cells were harvested in October. They harvest them and they freeze them and they’ll transfuse them back into him in December, but the first thing they have to do is go in and wipe out his whole immune system and start all over again,” Rue said.

Mr. Lee has been playing music since the 60’s touring with legends like Buckwheat Zydeco and Eric Clapton.

To help raise money for his treatments and living expenses, Zeno’s friends are hosting the “Zeno Fest” fundraiser.

He said Wayne Toups was the first to volunteer, a gesture Mr. Lee wasn’t prepared for.

“Every time I call him, he is there no matter what. I’m not used to people doing stuff for me,” Zeno said.

Doctors are hopeful the cancer will be completely gone after the stem cell therapy.

Mr. Lee says he isn’t scared and putting his faith in God.

“Zeno Fest” is this Sunday December 1, at the Acadiana Center for the Arts from noon till 5 p.m.

Wayne Toups, Buckwheat Jr., Roddie Romero and Major Handy are just some of the all-star performers – including Lee Allen Zeno himself.

All proceeds will go toward Mr. Lee’s medical bills, travel expenses and living expenses.

Learn more about the event here.

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