Today Show Valerie Harper Brain Cancer & Zildjian 390-Year-Old Company

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Today Show: Valerie Harper Brain Cancer

Earlier this week Valerie Harper, best know for her role as Rhoda Morgenstern on the TV series The Mary Tyler Moore Show and her own spin-off Rhoda, revealed to People magazine that she has terminal brain cancer.

The 73-year-old said she noticed some differences in how she was feeling a month ago and when she went to the doctor’s office they found an inoperable form of brain cancer, a rare form that spreads into the membrane around the brain.

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Today Show Valerie Harper Brain Cancer & Zildjian 390-Year-Old Company

The Today Show learned Valerie Harper has been diagnosed with a rare, uncurable type of brain cancer, and they looked at the 390-year-old Zildjian Company. (Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com)

Harper told People she has started her chemotherapy treatments saying she is long past her “expiration date,” but she is making plans for the days ahead. Harper might just pull through as she did in 2009 when she was diagnosed with lung cancer.

Today Show: 390-Year-Old Zildjian Cymbal Company

There is a company in America that is actually older than the country itself. The Zildjian Company started in Turkey in 1623, later moving to Massachusetts where it is still located and thriving today. The Zildjian Company has been making all types of cymbals for the past 390 years and they want to continue for another 390 years.

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CEO of the company, Craigie Zildjian, said their 125 person company has cornered half the cymbal market in the world because they haven’t shipped their services overseas. She said employees at the company trust the owners and the management, something she said worked just as well during the Great Depression when they were actually hiring workers instead of firing.

One worker at the company said the reason he has never seen any layoffs at the company is because they use technology to get the product made right and when a machine takes the job of a human, the Zildjian Company trains the worker how to do something else. One employee said he has been retrained seven different times while working for the company. The company even invites the input of musicians who use their product. They have a small room in the warehouse where musicians can bang on some cymbals to find out exactly how they would sound in any type of venue, from a bar room setting to an arena.

As for selling the company, Zildjian said many people have offered to buy the company but she is holding onto it for future generations of the family. That doesn’t mean they will ever become the CEO, though. Zildjian makes every person who wants to work for the company prove their worth outside the company, even family.

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