Update from Sam

Cold temps, Cameron Crazies and Chemotherapy, oh my…

20 Feb , 2015  

The last 48 hours have been out of the ordinary, to say the least.

Wacky Weather. Everyone is dealing with it (outside of you Southwesterners). It’s colder in Chapel Hill right now than it is in Anchorage, Alaska. Wha? For those of you out there that think this is normal or is just a pattern, it’s not. But I’m staying off my climate change soapbox today. This cold simply is not for me. I’ve lost about 8 lbs since this started, and ya’ll know I don’t have much to spare. Hunkered down till things get back above 45. It’s gonna be bacon and milkshakes and fries when this is all over.

A trip to Hansbrough Indoor stadium (also known as Cameron) for college sports best rivalry game – UNC vs Duke hoops. I mustered up enough energy, and courage, a few nights ago to take up an offer from my longtime friend, and old roommate, Daniel. Last time we did this was 1996. Outside of the final score, could not have picked a better game to go to. An overtime (free basketball as some of us like to call it) thriller. I brought about as much mojo and one dude can bring, particularly sending it down to the Heels in the second half. But then something weird happened with 4 minutes remaining. It was like a force field was blocking the good Heel juju and mojo from the court. I’m not sure who was responsible for this, but  have a good idea. LAETTNER. He was in the building. He sold his soul to the Devils Mojo back in 1992 when he hit that prayer vs. Kentucky. He must have some type of super power that he can use every decade or so to make miracles happen in his favor. That’s my take. Damnit Laettner!! Huge thanks to Daniel for taking me, and for the sweet DEAN shirt. Was a very cool tribute to Coach Smith prior to the game and I was happy to be a part of it.

Two down…round 2 in “my chair”. Was back at it yesterday at the Lineberger Center, this time joined by two other long time friends, Robert and Marc. They joined in on the fun from beginning to end and it was great having them there. We were twice asked if we were all brothers, as we were decked in black and all use the same hair stylist. Lots of goofy comments and jokes whenever this happens. We had the docs an nurses laughing/smiling, which lightened things up. College buddy Pat showed up just as I was finishing, and I was so anxious to leave I forgot to get a pic with him too. Bernie, RG and Pat Ho – big thanks for the support fellas!  These guys, like many others, have been amazing since day 1 and I can’t thank them enough.

Quick medical notes: My tumor is not near as painful, which means the chemo is working and it has reduced in size. This is good. I got a drip of nausea medicine that will hopefully have me feeling a bit better this time. My white blood cell count is already low, which is natural, especially with the Carboplatin chemo I am receiving. Will get a CT scan in 3 weeks to get a new measurement of that tumor and see if the other little spots are hopefully gone. March 12 is round 3. Game On. 


Three brothers??



Moment of silence for Coach Smith


Slim and the Ultimate Warrior



24 Responses

  1. Dorian says:

    Hang in there. I hope you have some Zofran (ondansetron) and make sure to pair that with some Colace…just saying :-). We are right down the road and here for anything you need…even it is as simple as delivering a six pack of brewskis or some take out (if u have an appetite). Love from Me, Mark and Gabi Grace

  2. Shawn Moran says:

    Is the doll your Mojo Warrior?

  3. Heather Gnegy Love says:

    I am so glad you have a wonderful group of friends who are there to cheer you and be with you every step of the way. Just goes to show how much you are loved. You can beat this!

  4. Betsy says:

    I see the chemo is making hair grow on your face. Very cool!

  5. Mary Nelson says:

    Shelby! You are in my thoughts and prayers brother

  6. Mary dukebarnwell says:

    You inspire me..thank you

  7. Mary dukebarnwell says:

    You inspire me..thank you

  8. Lynn Felton says:

    Your strength is inspiring! You can do this Sam! Sending lots of love and prayers!

  9. Chris Williams says:

    Hey Sam,

    Stopping by to say hi and let you know our family continues to send you good vibes! Sounds like you are on the right track and have an amazing support group. Truly blessed there, brother. Knock this thing out so we can get back to some tennis! If there is anything you need, don’t hesitate.


  10. Chris Williams says:

    Hey Sam,

    Stopping by to say hi and let you know our family continues to send you good vibes! Sounds like you are on the right track and have an amazing support group. Truly blessed there, brother. Knock this thing out so we can get back to some tennis! If there is anything you need, don’t hesitate.


  11. Eric Berling says:

    Sam, The body achieves what the mind believes. Keep it up. We’re all pulling for you.

  12. Ashlyn says:

    Keeping up with the great fight. Stay Strong!!!

  13. Tonia Jones says:

    Great seeing you a few weeks ago. Sending tons of good energy your way. Best, Tonia

  14. Heather McKinnon Lane says:

    Sam…thinking and praying for you daily!! xoxo

  15. Drew Dellinger says:

    Sending love to you, my brother!

  16. Jon Zahlaway says:

    Keep kickin’ ass, Sam. Sending you some Boston Strong mojo.

  17. Clifton Perkins says:

    keep up the good work amigo! Been thinking about you often

  18. Steph says:

    Sending lots of warmth, light & healing mojo Sam.

  19. Sean Mitchell says:

    Sending warm weather energy from Southern California Sam! Love that you have good friends by your side!

  20. Jenny says:

    Thankful to hear that the tumor is not as painful and hope round 2 is not as bad as the first. Great to see you with your brothers and positive spirit!

  21. Sara says:

    Thanks for the update Sam, we are thinking about you up here in a place where we’d rejoice if it were even close to 45 degrees! Virtual hugs!!

  22. Jester says:

    Thanks for the updates brother. Thinking about you every day, and pulling for you. Keep the power strong and keep pushing forward every day, my man. We’re all here to see you through this. Look forward to lunch again, soon, at Sage my friend. And by the way, you’re a darn good writer. Book, any time soon?


  23. Bret says:

    Finally got the nerve to say *something*. I’m you’re #1 fan in Texas and couldn’t be prouder of you. I need to convince by boss I need hands-on training near you!

    Peace and love

  24. Jane Deaton says:

    sending good thoughts your way Sam. Will see you smoking the pig at Sam and Diane’s in the fall. One of the neighbors! Jane

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