Kathleen Babineaux Blanco

Kathleen Babineaux Blanco ORG XMIT: BAT1604241543200474

Louisiana officials on Sunday offered prayers and support to former Gov. Kathleen Blanco, who announced she is fighting melanoma in her liver, for which she said there is no cure.

In a statement, Gov. John Bel Edwards said Blanco is a “strong woman of incredible faith” and asked Louisianans to join him and his wife, Donna, in prayers for the former governor.

“Donna and I have been blessed to come to know Gov. Blanco and her large, beautiful family over the past several years. She is a strong woman of incredible faith, a deep and abiding love of Louisiana and all its people. Now we ask the people of our state to join their prayers to ours that she, aided by the Great Physician as well as her medical team, wins a great victory over her cancer and is restored to full health,” Edwards wrote.

Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome encouraged the community “to give Governor Blanco the gift of fervent, faith-filled prayers and encouragement.”

"Governor Blanco has been a cherished friend over the years. As she bravely faces this battle with cancer, I lift her up in prayer. I believe in its power. I would encourage our community during this Advent season to give Governor Blanco the gift of fervent, faith-filled prayers and encouragement as she fights the good fight with faith on this present journey,” Broome said.

U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise tweeted that “Jennifer and I are keeping former Governor Kathleen Blanco in our prayers during her courageous battle.”

U.S. Rep. Garret Graves tweeted: “Please join me in sending prayers and blessings for Former Gov. Kathleen Blanco in her fight for cancer.”

U.S. Sen. John Kennedy also responded to the news, tweeting that he and his wife, Becky, are praying for Blanco. "Kathleen is a courageous fighter who selflessly served the people of La. We pray she finds comfort in her faith and family during the difficult days ahead," he said. 

Blanco wrote in a guest column on Sunday that she is “in a fight for my own life, one that will be difficult to win, battling the melanoma that has invaded my liver.”

The former governor, who served from 2004 to 2008, said she has begun a treatment program but no cure exists for this type of melanoma. She asked for “prayers and loving support” as she continues to undergo treatment.

Blanco was diagnosed in 2011 with ocular melanoma. Her eye was treated with radiation, which preserved her vision, she wrote in the guest column.