From the first episode of This Is Us (which, granted, wasn't long ago, but bear with us here), Randall was on a mission to find his biological father, and when he did locate him and invite him to his home, it gave us hope. Maybe this man, who'd left Randall in front of a fire station 36 years previously, could redeem himself. But then it was revealed that William is sick, so will Randall's dad die on This Is Us? It would be just like this new Parenthood, cry-fest of a show to do that to us, just when Randall and William start to build some kind of relationship together.
We learned early on that William has stomach cancer and when Randall finally got him to go to a specialist, it was revealed that the aspiring poet and former drug addict doesn't have much time left. It was bad enough to learn that William is sick, but to learn that his is an aggressive, terminal cancer really hit Randall hard. So will William die on This Is Us? Although the doctor they saw was pretty secure in his claims that there was nothing that could be done, this is TV.
According to the American Cancer Society, those who have a later stage of stomach cancer, the less of a percentage there is of survival. Even at the earliest stage, IA, the rate of survival is 71% and unfortunately goes lower with each stage of the disease. The treatments for stomach cancer are chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, and targeted therapy. More common than not, two or more of these methods are used in the treatment of most stomach cancer, but if the cancer has been detected at a later stage, such efforts may be seen as futile.
It seems unlikely that the folks behind This Is Us would bring in Randall's father only to have him live out the first season and then be gone forever. And the show is nothing if not all about those surprises, so you have to have some hope when it comes to these things. The doctor could have been wrong in his findings, there might be an experimental procedure or medication, or a last minute, hail Mary surgery might be the thing to cure William.
So will Randall's dad die on This Is Us? As far as we know, right now all signs point to William dying somewhere not too far down the line, but this is TV so anything can happen. Randall is determined to make things right with his dad, so let's not hold out hope until that final twist of the season. Because you know there will be one.