Former Dukes of Hazzard star John Schneider smiled as he walked the red carpet at the December 9 world premiere of his latest film Christmas Cars. The independent feature is a “semi-true story” about a down-on-his-luck former TV star’s comeback from disaster — something John knows all about.

In the past five years, John, 59, has survived a bitter divorce, a flood that damaged his Louisiana film studio and a brief stint in jail after failing to pay his court-ordered alimony. In May, the final blow hit when his then-fiancée — they married in July 2019) — Alicia Allain, 50, was diagnosed with breast cancer that had spread to her bones. “Praying was obviously the first thing we did,” the still-handsome actor and country singer tells Closer Weekly in the magazine’s latest issue, on newsstands now.

Once they recovered from the shock, John and Alicia got educated. “We attacked it like we attack everything else — by asking questions,” John says. The couple supported traditional medical therapy with a high-fat, low-carb ketogenic diet and holistic supplements including minerals and CBD oil. “I believe that the change in lifestyle gave the medicine a platform in which to work,” says John. “If you are making the body healthy so that it can fight the cancer along with the medication, then you have a recipe for success.”

John Scheider on 'The Dukes of Hazzard'
Moviestore/Shutterstock

Now cancer-free, Alicia feels grateful to her doctors and to John, who supported her through her medical journey. “Within five months, my PET scan went from [being lit up like] a Christmas tree to barely anything,” she says. “I do feel like God pointed me in the right direction.”

The ordeal has also brought them closer as a couple. “We’ve been through the worst news that somebody could get and come out stronger because of it,” says John, who urges other cancer patients to take an active role in their own treatment. “If you are diagnosed with cancer, you need to be your own advocate and make a decision on the trajectory and stick to it.”

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