5.01.2008

Why Chris Lofton is one of the most awesome people I’ve ever known.

Chris Lofton and I grew up in the same town, and he’s a cool guy. We’re not best friends or anything, and admittedly, I haven’t talked to him in a while, but I count him as more than a casual acquaintance. I know his family, and they’re all great people. I only say that because I don’t want some people thinking I consider him a friend simply because we grew up in the same town.

Chris is an awesome basketball player, but he’s a more awesome person. I read about something today, about a secret he kept from pretty much everybody, that reinforces my belief of what an awesome guy he is.

For the last year, Chris has been battling cancer. In a revelation that was only made public today, people learned about Chris’s fight with testicular cancer. It was actually discovered through sort of a fluke – he was one of the many NCAA tourney players randomly drug tested, and the results turned up positive – but what actually triggered the result was a chemical tumor marker that can show up on a drug test as steroid use.

For the whole article, feel free to check out

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/columns/story?id=3376961&campaign=rss&source=NCBHeadlines

But what I’d like to point out is that very few people knew about this. In a time when he could’ve been complaining to everyone about what a bad break he caught, in a time when he could’ve blamed any sub-par performance on chemo side effects, surgery or just the cancer itself, he kept quiet. He didn’t want others to have to suffer with him, and he used the same determination he’s used on the court so many times to stay strong even when everybody thought he would fail.

Chris is now cancer free, although he’ll continue to be monitored. Some people might say that because he kept it to himself he was being selfish in not wanting to let others help him. I don’t believe that at all. Chris is a strong individual, but part of what makes him such a great basketball player is his ability to be a team player, and he knew that something like this could disrupt the team – the basketball team, his team of friends and family, and even his team of fans. He stayed strong for them in the face of it, he kept his faith, and he beat cancer.

Chris Lofton is a great guy. Selfless, caring and a great example for anyone to follow.

-PreView

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