ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale‘s ties to Notre Dame are well documented. His two daughters both earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the university. The Vitale family made a $1 million donation to the school six years ago to help fund scholarships for students with demonstrated need.
Now, Vitale himself is in need.
For the second time in the span of a few months, Vitale is battling a form of cancer. He announced a melanoma diagnosis in August. Earlier this month, Vitale shared he had been diagnosed with lymphoma. Notre Dame graduate senior quarterback Jack Coan took to Twitter to let Vitale know he’s not fighting alone.
“On behalf of the Notre Dame football team, we just want to let you know we’re thinking of you,” Coan said in the social media message. “We’re praying for you. We love you. We’ve got your back. We’re going to get through this together. Go Irish.”
Vitale responded with a tweet of his own. He wrote that the “very touching message” brought tears to his eyes. In an ESPN article written by Vitale earlier this month, he said he will undergo six months of chemotherapy while continuing to work with the NCAA basketball season starting up soon.
“I am lucky and blessed to have a great team of medical experts along with wonderful family support,” Vitale wrote in the article. “I am also blessed to work with so many in my second family, ESPN. They have been so encouraging over the past three weeks as I’ve undergone one test after another in trying to analyze what was causing my symptoms.
“If you see me, please just give me a fist bump and say a prayer that I can return from being 82 years old to acting like I’m 12. Thanks so much for your love.”
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