LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — There is no primer on how to prepare for a brain surgery.

But you have to believe most people would spend the day before a possible life-altering surgery … worrying, fretting, being fearful.

Local singer Rebekah Del Rio is clearly not most people. This Sunday she will give a concert and sing some of her favorite songs.

The next day, she’s having an operation her doctors told her could end her singing career.

She recently spoke to CBS2 and and KCAL9’s Suzie Suh about her future and why she’s giving a concert.

“It’s always been my way of escape,” says Del Rio.

Suh says the singer and songwriter’s musical journey began at age 3.

“It was the first wedding in the family. I sang ‘Chicka Boom’. People started throwing money at me. This works. I love this!”

Shortly after high school it was music and motherhood with her son Phillip Craig De Mars. He was her best friend. “We kinda group up together.”

She adds, “He was in studios with me middle of the night, I think he was very very proud of me.”

Then when DeMars was 19, a melancholic melody. “My world stopped.”

He was diagnosed with a malignant tumor that was spreading. After 4 years of fighting, DelRio lost her only child.

“He was amazing, and today he’s still amazing. You hear psychics say you can see someone over your shoulder, I don’t need anyone to tell me that.”

Through sorrow and song she continued her career.

Led by the strength of her son, Del Rio continued her career. DelRio’s appeared in the film “Mulholland Drive.” (She sang ‘Llorando,’ the Spanish language version of Roy Orbison’s ‘Crying.’)

When DelRio was fighting to keep her son alive, she was battling her own ailments. “Stomach issues, all kinds of hormonal issues.”

Just weeks ago doctors told her she has a tumor in her brain. If she doesn’t have it removed, she could go blind, but to have it removed?

She risks losing the distinct sound of her voice.  She tells Suh, “I’m not sure what it’s gonna be like.”

Surgery is Monday, but the day before? That concert. It will be a benefit concert to raise money for medical expenses. Del Rio says no matter what happens she’ll always keep a song in her heart and bring everything she has — melodies, memories —  to the stage.

“Every dream I’ve ever had, every hope… for new beginnings.”

For more information about Rebekah Del Rio and her benefit concert, click here.


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