Susan Richardson has barely escaped death after she was rushed to the hospital because of a faulty feeding tube.
“My tube clogged on me!” said the former actress who starred in the TV show Eight Is Enough from 1977 to 1981.
“I’m OK now, but it was scary!”
The 64 year old actress has recently undergone a risky surgery and the crisis arose not too long after.
“While I was in the hospital, they took half my stomach, pulled it up and wrapped it around my esophagus,” said Richardson.
The actress has been placed on a feeding tube because of a rare disease called cardio-esophageal achalasia, which prevents her from swallowing food properly.
Because of the scary illness, the already petite star has withered away to only 107 pounds. Although the feeding tube has saved her life she is far from comfortable with it.
“A feeding tube is a frightening thing to have. You almost think, ‘I’d rather not live!’”
In the last decade, the actress has battled strokes and heart attacks and is trying her best to regain her health.
Meantime she’s started a new career as a children’s book writer.
“It’s been a rough year and has been even rougher of late,” she said, adding she was surviving on a less-than-healthy diet of Popsicles, Cream of Wheat and pain medications before the life-saving surgery.
The operation came after the Richardson had already lost her mother.
“My mom passed away, my dad passed away and my sister passed away — all very suddenly.”
Despite the life threatening complications, the actress said she was touched by the “incredible” love she received from so many people, including Eight Is Enough brothers, Grant Goodeve and Willie Aames.
“Oh my goodness, it was incredible! I came home from the hospital, and I had gotten calls from both Grant and Willie! With so much of my family gone, they became my family.”
“When I did get back in touch with Susan, after she was first in the hospital, her spirit was so bright and radiant it floored me!” Goodeve said.
“She has been through so much, she’s had so much hardship. But she doesn’t dwell on it. My heart really goes out to her!”
“They gave me the will to live again!” said Richardson.