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Patrick McIntosh

Extreme Survival.
Intrepid Traveler. South Pole Trekker.

Meet Patrick McIntosh, the 58-year-old Brit who trekked a grueling 138 miles to the South Pole unsupported, (e.g., he and his guide carried all their own supplies and equipment), after recovering from three types of unrelated cancer diagnosed within the same year. His aim? “I wanted to do something to keep spreading my message that eating the right foods and taking exercise is the key to surviving cancer, along with early diagnosis." Click here to read more about Patrick and his epic feat.

Dean Randazzo

Going Big.
Jersey Boy, Maverick, Hall of Fame Surfer

Excerpt: "Dean Randazzo – New Jersey’s most accomplished surfer, nicknamed the Jersey Devil – always knew he’d do great things. And four rounds of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma didn’t slow his battle against all odds.

Born in Atlantic City, Randazzo grew up in Margate and Somers Point. As an amateur surfer in 1989, he represented Mainland Regional High School at a National Scholastic Surfing Association competition in California. He turned pro the following year after he earned the attention of the Association of Surfing Professionals during a stellar performance at the 1990 Cold Water Classic. Ascending international rankings, he qualified for the ASP World Championship Tour in 1996, the first New Jersey competitor to do so."

At the height of his career in 2001, Randazzo was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Following multiple bone marrow transplants and four bouts with cancer, he returned to surfing, and the podium.

For more on Dean, now 45 years old, and all he's doing to pay it forward for cancer fighters, click here.

Andres Galarraga

Survivorship in Full Swing.
Tenacious. Ebullient. Comeback Player for the Ages.

This story is a bit of a rewind but it’s worth re-telling. It’s about retired Major League Baseball player Andres Galarraga, a first baseman and one of the game’s top hitters at the time. Winner of the 1993 National League batting title, his nickname was the Big Cat for his defensive agility as well. In 1994, playing for the Atlanta Braves, he hit an astounding 44 home runs and was named to the All-Star team for the fourth time. It also made him the first player ever to hit 40 home runs in back to back years for two different teams. He was 37 years old.

Immediately following that season, his life took a different turn when persistent back pain led to a diagnosis of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Given the location of his cancer, playing through treatment was out of the question. He missed the entire season. Galarragas returned the next year to a standing ovation on Opening Day. In an article that ran shortly after his return, the L.A. Times wrote, “During his six rounds of chemotherapy last summer, Galarraga ballooned to 280 pounds, and he suffered from nausea. When he was done with chemo, he had a month of radiation. At times he could scarcely recognize himself.”

The year he returned to the field, Galarraga played as if he’d never missed a beat, defying all expectations. He was named to his fifth career All-Star game that year and won the National League Comeback Player of the Year award.

In that same L.A. Times article, Galarraga said it was his mission to show other cancer sufferers that the disease can be beaten, that a seriously ill person can get stronger, and even better.

Boy did he ever.

For more on Galarraga, click here.

Toni Harris

Excelling Beyond Cancer.
Fierce. Game Changer. Conqueror. Legend.

Toni Harris dreams of playing professional football. If there’s anyone who can put a woman in the hallway that leads to the stage and a handshake with the NFL commissioner on draft day, it’s her. Antoinette "Toni" Harris, a free safety, is the first woman to earn a scholarship to play defense in a skilled position …. “a seriously skilled and tough position, no less,” according to a Glamour article posted about her earlier this month.

People along the way tried to stop her from playing the traditionally male sport. "My biggest pet peeve is people telling me that I can't," Toni said in an interview with NBC News. "So I have to prove them wrong."

"I don't let anything stop me. I don't take no for an answer," she said.

It’s an ethos that has served her well, particularly when she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer four years ago and started treatment with 16 chemotherapy session, three days apart in the beginning. Her weight dropped from 175 pounds to 90 pounds.

Earlier this year, Toni committed to Central Methodist University in Missouri following two years of breaking the mold playing football for East Los Angeles community college in Los Angeles, after she recovered from cancer. Her level of play there earned her six scholarship offers.

Her motto: Be so good, they can't ignore you.

Find out more about this amazing cancer survivor here:

"Toni Harris Just Made History as One of the First Women Awarded a Football Scholarship," by Abby Gardener,

"College football's first female position player, Toni Harris has beat cancer, critics and wide receivers," by Dennis Dodd, CBS Sports

"Female football star Toni Harris talks historic college scholarship," NBC News

Jake Olson

Seeing It Best.
Blind. Bold. USC Trojan Long Snapper.

From |  By Morgan Moriarty

Jake Olson lost his sight to retinoblastoma (a cancer of the retina) when he was 12 years old but he never lost his view of what is possible in this life.  His experience on the USC Trojans football team as a long snapper is a case in point, not just of his own capacity for triumph but the capacity of the community around him to rally for something far bigger than any individual.

To read his incredible story, click here. To watch the ESPN video of his story, click here.


Eric Shanteau

Different Strokes.
2x Cancer Survivor. Competing with Perspective. 

Eric Shanteau was on the verge of achieving his dream of swimming at the 2008 Olympics. Just one week prior to Trials, the competition that would determine who went and who did not, he was diagnosed with testicular cancer. With support from his doctors, he decided to postpone treatment compete knowing he had cancer. He made the Team and while training for the six weeks leading up to the Games, he was tested weekly to make sure his cancer was not progressing. Six days after returning from the Games, he underwent surgery and the therapies needed to battle the disease. He then returned to the sport and to the 2012 Olympics, winning gold as part of the 4×100-meter medley relay.

Now retired and reflecting back on that time in a recent interview with Swimming World Magazine, Shanteau said, “I think a lot of the time when you get to a high level of competition, it becomes the most important thing in the world and it’s really not. There is a big life outside of sports. And this is also me talking (after being) retired for seven years. For me, (cancer) gave me a different perspective on the sport. And I think long term for the four years I continued after my diagnosis, it helped me a lot.”

Eric fought through a recurrence of his cancer in 2017, with treatment that included chemo and more surgery. Now a motivational speaker, Eric talks about learning from failure and seeing the silver linings in difficult circumstances, remaining committed to achieving your dreams and to "just keep swimming."

Victoria Duval

Playing to Win.
Resolute. Focused. Animated. Boss. 

From the Baton Rouge Advocate  | TEDxYouth@IMGAcademy

“I never really had moments where I said, ‘Why me?’, or anything like that. I faced a lot of difficult things in my life, and I never have that attitude. I think that’s kind of what gets me through things so quickly.” - Victoria Duval

Twenty-three-year-old tennis player and Hodgkin’s lymphoma survivor Victoria Duval is at her her best when playing from behind. From a breakout performance in 2013 when she defeated 2011 U.S. Open champ Samantha Stosur, to overcoming a kidnapping at gunpoint in her home country before moving to the U.S. to fighting cancer, Duval’s resolve and positive focus keeps her moving forward, no matter what. As she says, on and off the tennis court, her ability to fight through adversity is 'inherently in my genes.'

For more about Victoria, click here or here.


Gabe Grunewald

Keeping Cancer on the Run.
Determined. Resilient. Tough as Nails. 

From |  By Chris Chavez

“Cancer can stop you from doing a lot of things. I’m well aware of that. But I’m more interested in what cancer can’t stop me from doing. Here’s to finding out.” - Gabe Grunewald

Introducing tough. Actually, when it comes to Gabe Grunewald, tough doesn’t even begin to describe her.  She’s a middle distance professional runner, now 32 years old. She was first diagnosed with adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC), a rare cancer known primarily for recurring. Since then, she has fought back cancer four times and through it all, maintained her running career …even after extended breaks for treatment. Most recently, she returned after 14 months of away to complete the Ed Murphey Mile in Memphis last August. Her time: 4:27.94 (4:01.48).

To read more about her, click here.


Sachi Cunningham

Surviving ...Big Time.
Big Wave Photographer. Intrepid Game Changer.
From |  By Ashtyn Douglas

A BRCA1 gene carrier, award-winning filmmaker Sachi Cunningham had the preventative surgeries, only to discover fallopian tube cancer in the process. Throughout the treatment that followed and driven by passion and perseverance, she continued to brave the wild surf that comes with the territory of the big wave surf photography she loves, as well as her documentary film making and her position as an assistant professor of multimedia journalism at San Francisco State University.

Excerpt: ...a former competitive swimmer and water polo player, Sachi has always felt drawn to the ocean and crashing waves. Of the role surf photography player for her throughout her diagnosis and treatment she says, "I think it saved me. It was a medicine in my arsenal of things that kept me alive--and continues to keep me alive. Being in the ocean lets you connect with something larger than yourself. One of the hardest things about cancer is not knowing what is going to happen next and having a total loss of control. I felt fine and strong a lot of the time, and I really owe that to the ritual I had of swimming in big waves. Every time I went out in the water during a bigger swell, it was a practice of being in an environment that I had no control over..."

To read more about Sachi, click here.