Legendary NFL quarterback and four-time Super Bowl champion Terry Bradshaw went public with a cancer diagnosis in October after nearly a year of dealing with the disease.
Bradshaw, who is now cancer free, was first diagnosed with bladder cancer and a Merkel cell tumor in the past year. During an October 2 broadcast on “Fox NFL Sunday,” the hall of fame opened up about his diagnosis for the first time.
“I couldn’t breathe,” he recalled. “That’s when everybody notices. ‘What’s wrong with him?’ Social media went, ‘Get rid of him. He needs to be off the air. He’s an embarrassment.’ And I was like, ‘Embarrassment? I got cancer.’”
“I didn’t talk about it because I didn’t want pity,” Bradshaw said on NBC’s Today in an interview on Nov. 2. “I didn’t talk about it because a lot of celebrities — unfortunately, I’m one of those — when they say this, I think the perception around America … is, ‘Aw, look at him. Bless his heart. He has cancer. Well, my husband died of cancer!…’
“I didn’t want that. It took a long time before I told my family,” he continued.
Regardless of his condition, Bradshaw asserted “he never was scared.”
“I don’t think cancer cares,” he said jokingly. “Cancer shows no favoritism.”
Following his diagnosis, Bradshaw relied on his Christian faith as his source of strength.
“As a man of faith, as a Christian, my attitude was, well, if I go, I’m okay. If I stay, I’m okay.”
According to The Daily Wire, Bradshaw was first diagnosed with bladder cancer in November 2021 and doctors later found a tumor in March after experiencing “nerve pain in my neck and my shoulder.”
“I have injured my neck before, so this is not uncommon,” he recalled.
Bradshaw also praised his wife, Tammy, for being there for him during his recovery.
“I can’t put into words how thankful I am for her. Seriously. I can’t imagine not holding her hand when we take off on a plane or when we land or when we snuggle up when we’re in bed together. I look at her and she doesn’t know I’m looking at her, and I’m so thankful now I’m getting emotional.”
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. He is also the co-host of the For Your Soul podcast, which seeks to equip the church with biblical truth and sound doctrine. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.