Actor Erik Jensen, who is best known for his TV roles in “The Walking Dead” and “Mr. Robot,” was diagnosed last week with Stage 4 colorectal cancer, according to his family.

Now other veterans of “The Walking Dead” franchise, along with members of the wider Hollywood and stage communities, are drumming up support to raise money for his treatment as his family struggles financially amid the ongoing actors’ strike. As of Wednesday afternoon, a GoFundMe page started a week ago by his wife, actor Jessica Blank, has raised more than $106,000 toward its goal of $300,000.

The donor list already includes actor Nick Offerman and his wife and fellow actor Megan Mullally, Donna Lynne Champlin of “My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” “WandaVision” director Matt Shakman, “Oz” creator Tom Fontana and the nonprofit Broadway Cares, as well as Emily Kinney, who starred as Beth Greene in “The Walking Dead” throughout the show’s 12-year run, including Season 5, where she acted alongside Jensen.

“Stage IV is not a death sentence,” says a statement on the fundraising page, which includes a photo of Jensen in a car with Blank and their 13-year-old daughter, Sadie. “Erik is determined to make it through this, and he’s working incredibly hard to stay positive and fight for the shot that his doctors know he has.”

Jensen’s diagnosis came about 1½ years after he survived a brain aneurysm, the statement said. Doctors found that the colorectal cancer has metastasized to his liver, but they may still be able to shrink the tumors enough through chemotherapy so they can operate and remove them.

The financial strain caused by the actors’ and writers’ double strike is mentioned in the statement, which refers to Blank and Jensen as “full-time freelance artists” who “live without the cushion that long-term commercial work can provide.” It adds that the “lack of streaming residuals” has affected them financially, much like “so many middle class working actors.”

Eric Jensen in a dark suit is posing with his wife Jessica Blank in a black dress and daughter Sadie in an orange dress

Actors Erik Jensen and Jessica Blank have a 13-year-old daughter, Sadie.

(Bryan Bedder / Getty Images for Audible)

“Erik’s aneurysm, the double strikes and now this diagnosis have put their family in an extremely precarious financial position and they need a lot of help to make it through the next year, pay for treatment to fight his cancer, keep their home, and maintain some sort of stability for Sadie,” the statement said. .

The SAG-AFTRA strike, which started in July, recently passed its 100th day, as the union returned to the negotiating table with major studios and streamers on Wednesday. The Writers Guild of America ended its strike after more than 140 days last month when they came to a contract agreement with the studios.

Although Jensen currently has health insurance through SAG-AFTRA, his limited ability to work leaves him at risk of losing coverage, according to the statement.

In response, several veterans of the AMC zombie-apocalypse drama have taken to social media to help raise funds for Jensen, who played Dr. Steven Edwards, the smart, well-meaning but ultimately cowardly doctor at a hospital where several of the show’s main characters were imprisoned.

“One of TWD’s own could use a little help,” Scott M. Gimple, “The Walking Dead” showrunner for several seasons, wrote Monday in a post on X, formerly Twitter. “Erik Jensen, who played Dr. Steven Edwards in S5 was just diagnosed with cancer, and it’s a time of great uncertainty for him and his family. If you want to send something his way.”

Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who starred in the show’s latter seasons as antagonist Negan, echoed Gimple in a retweet, and wrote, “Never had the chance to work with Erik… until now anyway. Only have heard many things about what a great guy he is. I do know he and his could use some help…. Of any and all kind. xojd”

Garret Dillahunt, who appeared in the spinoff “Fear the Walking Dead,” wrote on X, “I know it’s a f— up time for so many, but if you can help our friend, we’d all appreciate it.”

Jensen is also an active stage actor and writer, having co-written with Blank the off-Broadway play “Exonerated,” which earned several NAACP Award nominations, and he acted in the Pulitzer Prize-winning and Tony-nominated production of “Disgraced.” On the small screen, after his time on “The Walking Dead,” Jensen also had a recurring role in USA thriller “Mr. Robot,” playing right-wing conspiracy theorist Frank Cody, and appeared in “Chicago P.D.,” “Law and Order: SVU,” “High Maintenance” and “Modern Love.”

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