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Erin Andrews: True fighter

Lily Marchetto, Section Editor, The Bagpipe

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2016 was a difficult year for Fox NFL sideline reporter and “Dancing with the Stars” co-host Erin Andrews. When she went to trial over a lawsuit against a stalker who filmed her in her hotel room in 2008, she probably thought the worst was over. However, that fall, Andrews was diagnosed with cervical cancer. Rather than let the cancer control her life, Andrews kept her diagnosis a secret even to many of those around her and kept working throughout treatment, never missing a single NFL game.

When Andrews first received the news of her diagnosis, she missed two tapings of “Dancing with the Stars” to allow herself a little time to cope, but she did not reveal to her coworkers the main reason behind her absence. After that, she was determined to not allow her diagnosis keep her from her work. In fact, before surgery she told her doctor that she refused to miss any football games; after all, it is Fox’s year to host the Super Bowl.

“After the trial everyone kept telling me, ‘You’re so strong, for going through all of this, for holding down a job in football, for being the only woman on the crew,’” Andrews said to Sports Illustrated’s the MMQB. “Finally I got to the point where I believed it too.”

Just five days after surgery, she was back on the sidelines for a game in Green Bay. Throughout her career, Andrews has wanted to fit in with her colleagues and not be looked at differently for what she has endured. Perhaps that is why she did not reveal what she was going through to her coworkers or to the press until late January.

But as rough of a year as it was for Erin Andrews, her story is not one of a victim, but a story of a fighter and a survivor. On November 17, Andrews learned that there were no signs of cancerous tissue remaining, and she would not need radiation or chemotherapy. Andrews has found that because of the obstacles she faced, she can now better identify with the players she is interviewing. She has learned what it is like to be the one on the front page, not the one reporting it. Andrews only wishes that people will see her as a real person, and try to understand the pain that the things she endured caused her. Hopefully, her story of suffering, perseverance, and success, can be an inspiration to all.

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