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TLC’s T-Boz Won’t Let Sickle Cell Anemia and Brain Tumor Stop Her Music Career [VIDEO]


The members of TLC have soldiered on through lawsuits, arrests, personality conflicts and the shocking death of Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes in 2002; all while churning out a string of hits in the ’90s.

Unfortunately, the bandmates still have more obstacles to face. As former TLC singer Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins revealed during an interview with CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta, her lifelong struggle with sickle cell anemia was compounded by a brain tumor. 

“Doctors, they didn’t give me a happy ending,” she reflected, discussing her younger days with anemia. “You won’t live past 30, you’ll be disabled your whole life. You’ll never have kids. I was looking around the room like, ‘I don’t know who he’s talking to cause that’s not my story.’”

Five years ago, Watkins’ health issues increased when doctors discovered a tumor in her brain. Fortunately, it was non-cancerous, but she’s still had to deal with some lingering side effects since its removal, including a poor sense of balance, which must be truly frustrating for a performer once known for her dance moves.

Still, she continues to persevere. In fact, she’s making plans to record a new album of inspirational songs.

She explains:

At the end of the day, I do think there’s a higher power and the way I feel about things and choose to do things has an effect on that outcome… If you want to live, you have to face your fears. I had to learn a lot about myself during the situation with my brain tumor. The hardest thing was waiting to see what kind of brain tumor I had and getting back to where I am today. I’ve been through a lot with sickle-cell, but my recovery from the brain tumor was THE hardest thing. I’m proud of myself for seeing this through and to be here for my daughter. You have to make a commitment to yourself and that was important to me.

Watch the rest of the interview with T-Boz on CNN


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