Joel Achenbach’s April 2 Health & Science commentary, “Cancer as a non-tragedy,” was delightful. I have kept a personal list of the “Ten Women I Most Admire and Why.” They can be living or dead, known personally or not, but the important thing is they stay on my list until someone new can bump another one off. I keep the number at 10 — it’s my list, so I can make the rules.

Mr. Achenbach’s mother is going on my list because of her positive attitude. She will appear as “Joel the writer’s mom.” My list keeps me aware of what my values are and what I should aspire to.

Thanks for sharing her story. I already eat lots of blueberries and will consider carrot juice for good health. Does carrot cake count?

Mary Yerrick, Bethesda