It was a beautiful and moving speech that Stuart Scott admitted he almost didn't have the strength to give.
The 48-year-old "SportsCenter" anchor was honored last night at the ESPY Awards with the Jimmy V Perseverance Award for his ongoing fight against cancer; giving the audience via a short documentary some dramatic insight into his 7-year fight.
"I just got out of the hospital; I had four surgeries in the span of seven days," he said on-stage. "I had tubes running through every part of my body! As of Sunday, I didn't even know if I could make it here. I couldn't fight. But the doctors and nurses could; the people that I loved and my friends and family, they could. This whole fight, this journey thing, is not a solo venture, this is something that requires support."
Since being diagnosed with appendiceal cancer in 2007, Scott has undergone 58 infusions of chemotherapy and three abdominal surgeries. Throughout all of it, he's continued to work at ESPN, work out at the gym, and raise his two girls. During an interview with the NY Times earlier this year
, Scott said he has no desire to have his cancer labeled with "stages."
“I never ask what stage I’m in,” he said. “I haven’t wanted to know. It won’t change anything to me. All I know is that it would cause more worry and a higher degree of freakout. Stage 1, 2 or 8, it doesn’t matter. I’m trying to fight it the best I can.”
At the Nokia Theatre Wednesday night, Scott reiterated that belief, telling the audience that fighting cancer is victory itself; whether it's the individual or his/her support network on the front lines.
"When you die, it does not mean that you lose to cancer. You beat cancer by how you live, while you live and the manner in which you live."
Watch Scott's moving speech below.
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