Rob Montgomery is naturally athletic. He played football, basketball, and baseball in high school, and now he hits the tennis court a few times a week and golfs when he can. Montgomery says sports have taught him endurance, discipline and “the ability to keep going and trying to win when you’re down.” And that’s also his approach to multiple myeloma.
“I look at this disease as just another hurdle that I need to get over,” Montgomery said. “I have it on the calendar as something to check off, whether it's going in for my Tuesday morning lab tests or my Thursday morning chemo infusions. They're just appointments that I look at as something to get done so I can keep moving on with the rest of my life, whether that's a business meeting or playing tennis.”
It helps, Montgomery said, that he’s being treated close to home at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island by Amrita Krishnan, M.D., an international expert on multiple myeloma.
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“A friend of mine who is a spinal physician referred me to Dr. Krishnan, who is on the absolute leading edge of multiple myeloma,” Montgomery said. “And the fact that City of Hope—one of the nation’s most renowned cancer institutions—has a location five minutes away from my home is a huge saving grace for me, not just in terms of my time, but also my mental well-being. I didn’t need to look anywhere else for my cancer care.”
Playing to win against multiple myeloma
Montgomery’s multiple myeloma was detected in September 2020 during a physical exam. Once he met with Dr. Krishnan, Montgomery quickly knew that he wanted to be treated by her in Newport Beach. Dr. Krishnan put him on a customized treatment plan, and in April 2021, Montgomery received a stem cell transplant to encourage production of healthy blood cells and platelets. He fared well during the procedure, which he attributes to his active, healthy lifestyle.
“During the recovery period, I walked an average of two miles a day,” Montgomery said. “It helped me mentally and physically to get outside and move. Before long, I was back on the tennis court two or three times a week and working every day.
“It was wonderful that the treatment process wasn't overly debilitating to me,” he added. “I think City of Hope does a great job at using new technologies and drugs to help make transplants easier for patients. And I think I was fortunate in that I'm reasonably strong. I’m thankful I was able to get through it well and keep living the way I always had.”
It’s an active life
In addition to tennis and golf, Montgomery enjoys boating in Newport Harbor, Emerald Bay, and even motoring to Catalina Island with his wife Leslie. They enjoy traveling and spending time with their two daughters, who attend the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Montgomery is grateful for the circle of support surrounding him. He recently started another round of infusion therapy and is part of a close-knit group of fellow multiple myeloma patients at City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island. He’s surrounded by positivity and innovative cancer treatment that come together to give him hope.
“It’s real, true hope,” he said. “It's not just hope like, ‘Gee, I hope I get through this.’ It's confident hope, which means everything for my treatment and in the way that I mentally approach it.”
Hope is growing at City of Hope Orange County. Our new locations in Huntington Beach, Newport Beach Lido and Irvine Sand Canyon join City of Hope Newport Beach Fashion Island to form a four-location network of highly specialized cancer care.
To make an appointment at any of our four Orange County locations, click here or call:
- Newport Beach Fashion Island: (949) 763-2204
- Newport Beach Lido: (949) 999-1400
- Irvine Sand Canyon: (949) 333-7580
- Huntington Beach: (714) 252-9415