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In Appreciation of Bud Nameck

From Howie Stalwick in the Seattle Times:

WSU radio broadcaster Bud Nameck has begun chemotherapy treatment for lymphoma, a form of cancer. Nameck said doctors believe they caught the cancer in its early stages. "It's pretty humbling," Nameck said.

Sometimes, we get so involved in sports that we forget about the whole "life" part that surrounds it. This is quite a punch to the stomach - for Bud, for his family and for the Cougar nation as a whole.

Bud Nameck is a Coug homer. He voices his opinions on fouls, largely with crimson-colored glasses. He lets his emotions shine through, and is largely unapologetic about it. And he's a great announcer. There's no one else I'd rather listen to when I get my WSU basketball on the radio. You know you've done something right when a large number of your team's fans mute the television, get their audio from their local station, and then complain about the TV/radio time delay.

It's rare I get to put my medical knowledge to use on the blog, and in some ways I hate to have it here. Cancer is the one ailment where the treatment is often every bit as harmful as the disease (at least in the short term). Cancer doesn't cause you to lose your hair - the chemotherapy drugs do. Cancer doesn't cause nausea and vomiting - chemo and radiation do. Cancer drugs are, essentially, poisons. They are designed to attack the fastest dividing cells of the body, but in the process attack all of them. Still, it's what you have to do if you want a fighting chance. It often is your only option, especially at a younger age.

The good news for Bud is that doctors believe they've caught it in the early stages. That's good. Cancer is best attacked as early as possible, and by the time it's detectable you may already have millions of cells working against you. And cancer never truly leaves the body; if you can get it into remission, though, you've done well. 

All of us at CougCenter are wishing the best for Bud and his family. He's been a great Cougar over the years - let's hope he beats this thing.