Please Pray With Strong Faith

After many serious health challenges recently, Dr. Simmie Armstrong said, “Clark, we saved your finger two years ago, and this time we tried our best to save your leg. I’m so sorry that things didn’t work in our favor again.”

When Clark talked with me about the decision that he was facing, he said, “Don’t worry. Just because you lose your leg, it doesn’t mean you’ll lose your life.” He is a phenomenal fighter in the truest sense. I asked him if he’d developed his strong survival instinct from learning how to box when he was a young boy. He responded with, “Yes, you could say that.” He talked about the thrill of victory in the boxing ring and how it gave him courage to face many obstacles in his life.

We discussed one of his favorite Duke Ellington principles – “There are two rules in life: Rule #1 is – don’t quit. Rule #2 is – don’t forget rule #1.”

Clark said, “I believe that you can’t afford to quit. You have to keep on keepin’ on.” So, on Wednesday morning, after spending time with family and friends, vascular surgeon Heather LeBlanc amputated Clark’s right leg. That afternoon, she said, “The surgery went well. We’re going to put him in the intensive care unit for twenty-four hours to keep a close watch, considering his age and health status.”

I’ll do my best to keep you all informed. In the meantime, please pray with strong faith that God will heal Clark.

Blessings and love,

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229 Responses to Please Pray With Strong Faith

  1. Dearest sir,
    You are in my thoughts and prayers today. We have never met, but I was a long-time student of Cat Anderson’s and he loved and admired you (and stole some of your licks), and from him I became a fan. You have influenced so many. We can only say thank you and send our love. A quick recovery and good spirits for you are on everyone’s wish list this season.

    Long live Clark Terry!

    Geoff Winstead

  2. Pat Shaner says:

    CT –

    You’re in my prayers. My best to you. I can’t begin to express the inspiration that you have given all of us.


  3. Bruce Lee says:

    I pray that His will brings you through this, Clark. May you find comfort in that fact that the music community is reaching out to both you and Gwen right now. Godspeed!

    Bruce Lee

  4. Dallas Crane says:

    Keep on keepin on, Clark! You are an inspiration to the world!

  5. I had a oportunity to see him alive concert at Richmond 99 ITG conference. It was a great in my live.

  6. Kirk Garrison says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with you. You are one of a kind, a true inspiration not only as a musician, but as a human being. God Bless You.

  7. Beckie Hocker says:

    Dear Clark and Gwen:

    Thoughts are with you so very often but especially now during this time. We know that his birthday is quickly approaching too! Please know you are and will remain in our hearts and prayers during this time and continually.

    With Love,
    Beckie & Noah

  8. Dede Shirley Briscoe says:

    Gwen,my prayers and LOVE are constant,please give C.T. my love.Dede

  9. Dede Shirley Briscoe says:

    Gwen ,my prayers and LOVE are constant,please give C.T. my love.Dede

  10. Marvin Smitty Smith says:

    Many prayers and blessings to you, C.T.! Your one of our greatest ambassadors and proponents of our music, and I’m grateful to have shared the bandstand with you. Get well very soon!

  11. Nathan says:

    We’re playing for YOU tonight Clark! Hang in there and know how much you mean to so many of us!

  12. Clark … My thoughts and prayers are with you. Thankyou for “you” and all the good feelings you’ve spread over the years. God Bless You!

    Michael Manthey

  13. Jack Dennis says:

    Clark!! Hang in there man!! You are loved by all us trumpet players. Keep on swingin’ man cause you are the best!!

    Jack Dennis!!

  14. Jack Dennis says:

    Clark!!! You are my hero and the world,s greatest trunpet and Flige player. Praying for you man. You are loved deeply by all of us Horn players. Hang in there Mr. Mumbles. Jack Dennis!!!

  15. Hey Clark,

    I just wanted you to know that you’re always in my thoughts and always in my heart. I’ll be praying for your improving health everyday from Cambodia and Indonesia where I’ll be traveling for much of this month. I also wish you a swingin’ birthday on the 14th. You are the greatest and with a heart of gold. So many of us have been recipients of the blessings from your compassionate spirit and immense talent and owe you a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid. Thank you immeasurably.

    Love to you,
    Herbie Hancock

  16. Stan Modjesky says:

    Best wishes and prayers for a speedy recovery. Your recordings in the fifties are what taught me to love the flugelhorn.

  17. Michael Coury says:

    Clark, you’re in my thoughts! Your music is a constant inspiration and here’s hoping for a good recovery for you.
    From Vancouver,

  18. Trent says:

    God Bless CT…. you are my hero and every note I play I play for you…. So many of us out here love you madly.

    Hugs from Beantown, Clark.


  19. Cindy McLeod says:

    Dear Mr. Terry;

    May God Bless you and guide you through a speedy recovery. Mr. Ellington’s words resonate and you show us the path.

    With love from Calgary, Canada,


  20. Michael Walters says:

    Dearest Clark,
    You are in my prayers. Please keep your spirit up. The world needs you.

    Mike Walters