Ali’s Story: Win or Lose?

I want to tell you the story of a young woman named Ali Puckett of Atlanta, Texas. Ali was a beautiful 22 year old wife and mother who had just given birth to her son, Gabriel, when she was diagnosed with cancer. The doctors told her she had stage 4 Metastatic Adenocarcinoma and it had spread from her colon into her liver. Ali and her husband Ethan had great faith. They were surrounded by their family, church and community that were praying and believing with them for a miracle.

Ali fought this battle with cancer for 7 months. There were times when it looked like she was going to win…When tumor markers were starting to shrink…When some of the cancer looked like it had died…But then the cancer came back in another location causing greater pain and weakness. Ali’s battle ended July 7th, 2018.

Did Ali win her fight with cancer or did Ali lose? We talk about fighting cancer, that we are in a battle, but does it mean that if we die that cancer has won? Ali may have died but her influence lives on and is still touching hundreds of lives because of her great faith and her love for others.

Ali believed in a loving God and in a God that still works miracles. I never met Ali personally, but I would hear her story from others. I would pray with her mother every week believing for a miracle in Ali’s body. I would hear stories of how when people would walk into her hospital room, they would leave more encouraged and filled with faith than when they arrived.

Ali was young but spent her short life helping others. Ali was a strong Christian and she believed in life after death. The Bible teaches that earth is not our home, it is just a short part of our journey until we reach our final destination… Eternity with a loving Heavenly Father. Heaven is a real place where there is no more sickness, no more pain, no more suffering. Some people are on this journey called life for only a short time, others for a little longer, but in face of eternity, it is only just a few moments.

Because of Ali’s faith, she did not lose…she won! She is now more alive than any of us will ever be on this earth. She is now a part of what Hebrews calls that great crowd of witnesses. She is in heaven cheering her family and friends on, praying and interceding for them. She is living the life that we can’t even imagine. Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT):

No eye has seen, no ear has heard,

and no mind has imagined

what God has prepared

for those who love him.

We may have lost Ali, but she is really not lost, because we know where she is. This separation is only temporary and one day we will be reunited with her for all eternity. Ali’s faith and love and hope now lives on through the lives of her friends and family. Her influence of courage and strength will help many who battle with cancer or sickness and disease. Whether we live or die, we can be winners like Ali. Remember the old adage: It’s not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game. Ali played well. She is now living the life that all of us long to live. If you have an Ali in your life who influenced you even in your darkest moments, I would love to hear your story.

O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? But thank God! He gives us victory over… death through our Lord Jesus Christ! (1 Cor 15:55–57 NLT)

P.S. I will post Ali’s mom’s story next time.


  1. Jacquel Lother says:

    I am inspired by reading about Ali’s Journey. And, I am challenged to make the most of this day and every day I have to love God and others on my earthly journey. I will be thankful for all the blessings in my life today…the bigs ones and the small ones!! Thanks for this post LaNell! You are an inspiration! ???

  2. Will you please add my friend to the Prayer Wall?
    Michelle Theilen. Breast cancer. Hanover, Minnesota

  3. Thanks for posting this, Lanelle. I am encouraged reading about Ali’s journey. I am challenged to make the most of today – and every day I have to love God and others on this earthly journey. I will be thankful for all the blessings in my life…the big ones and the little ones! Thanks!!

  4. Michelle Halbert says:

    This is such a sad and inspiring story. Many people will be touched and may this story give inspiration to others.

  5. Kayla Mills says:

    Ali was my best friend, and I feel insanely blessed to have been fortunate enough to spend the last few days by her side in the hospital. Even in pain, barely able to whisper, she would shout praises, talking to God. You are so right – she won! Oh how she won.

Leave a Reply to Michelle Halbert Cancel reply