Lee Woodruff


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Friends Life Stories


Lung cancer.  That will stop a conversation.  More than any of the frightening medical diagnoses, that one seems extra ominous.  Someone utters the words “lung cancer” and I think of devastating, almost insurmountable odds.   At the age of 32, that’s what Lee Rhodes was told when she learned that her worrisome  ...

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Family Stories

Summer Bribes

When I joined my DNA with my husband’s, there were many unanswered questions. Would my recessive blonde genes triumph over his green eyes and dark hair?  Would our kids inherit his more mathematical and logical mind?  Would his laid back attitude trump my more tightly wired list-making one?  No matter. Those were all things we had  ...

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Family Stories

Hand Over Heart

Several thousand of us thundered to our feet for the national anthem at a recent college graduation. Predictably, these types of events are choked with the emotion of life’s passages.  I had been observing parents on the bleachers hugging family members and wincing back tears.  The graduates on the field, roasting in dark caps and gowns,  ...

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Family Links Stories

Article in Parade: Coming Back to Life

Hi there!  I recently published an article in Parade on the importance of struggle, survival, and staying positive. As the nation roots for Gabrielle Giffords’s recovery, the wife of ABC’s Bob Woodruff talks about the long road back from brain injury By Lee Woodruff  After my husband, Bob, called to tell me about the shooting of  ...

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Humor Laughter Stories


I will buy new towels and sheets. I will not use threadbare and frayed ones just because I have them. I will use all my lotions and potions and I will burn candles. I will not save things for later. I will tell everyone how much I love them whenever the mood strikes — and I will tell them when they do little things that amaze me; simple things they  ...

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Family Stories

The Old Pink Bathrobe

A man died not long ago in our town.  He jumped off a bridge and he left a wife and three sons behind; shocked, gutted and trying to square this act with the man they knew. This event stunned and silenced us all.  The very finality of it, the public nature, the shame and the many questions that must still float unanswered in the minds of the loved  ...

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Humor Stories

Rubber Chicken

I’m just on my way back from a luncheon where I’ve been the featured speaker and have hopefully said something vaguely inspiring or coherent. I’m beginning to think I no longer sound very coherent. Or maybe I’m just sick of hearing myself talk. As someone who talks to various groups around the country --- I have become an unexpected connoisseur of  ...

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Book Stories Travel


(cont) This last flight leg is a small prop plane. We are delayed an hour and by the time almost everyone has boarded, a family straggles on. They are Pakistani from what I can tell. They are exhausted, two kids in tow, one an infant and the other about three. I silently close my eyes and recite the airplane mantra. “Please don’t let them sit near  ...

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Book Humor Stories Travel


I have misread the schedule in Detroit.  There is no down time before events and I have not arrived in my “media outfit.”  I have not even showered as I had thought we were going to the hotel. The girlfriend-like media escort appears excited to see me.  The book business in Detroit has slowed with the economy and the automotive downturn. We stop for  ...

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