Summary Of The Opening Chapter Of John Gunther's Death Be Not Proud

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Death Be Not Proud, written by John Gunther, is a memoir commemorating the life and death of Gunther’s son at the hands of a brain tumor. Throughout the book, Gunther focuses on describing his son Johnny’s defining physical and mental traits as well as his endurance and courage in the face of his life threatening illness. In the first chapter, Gunther gives background to how it was discovered that his son Johnny had a brain tumor. After having symptoms such as a stiff neck and a lack of response in his eyes, Johnny’s doctor proceeded to do a spinal tap in which they found pressure on his brain in result to the presence of a tumor. Gunther elaborates in abundance how his son never faltered in being optimistic through his will to live and desire to learn more about his disease. At the end of the chapter, Johhny faints and tests show that his tumor is undergoing a transformation that will inevitably lead to death. Johnny begins to lose his peripheral vision in the beginning…show more content…
The dean of Johnny’s school calls Johnny and tells him that because of his extra credits, he will be able to receive his diploma, and Johnny makes sure to attend all of the graduation events and ceremonies despite his worsening condition and his inability to feed himself. Johnny begins to experience more amnesia attacks followed by tremors and intense headaches. While preparing to visit his mother for the summer, Johnny grows weak and is rushed to the hospital where he dies in his sleep from a cerebral hemorrhage regardless of the intensive medical care given to him.
Throughout Death Be Not Proud, Gunther writes of Johnny in a way that shows his incredible gumption and unwillingness to submit to his disease. Johnny’s passion for education and selflessness shine through as defining character traits even though his illness limits his physical

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