#42: Beats Cancer
Shortly after 1997 got underway, Arnold Palmer was told that he had prostate cancer. After a moment of disbelief, shock, and anger, Palmer’s old self kicked in and he decided to fight it head-on.
“The decision was up to me, [my physicians] said. ‘Well,’ I remember replying almost without hesitation, ‘if you’re leaving it up to me, I think there’s only one thing to do. Let’s get the damn thing out.’” A few days later Palmer had surgery at the Mayo Clinic, and a few months after that Arnie was back on course, playing with Jack Nicklaus at Augusta to the delight of fans. Even if his stamina wasn’t what it used to be, he said, he’d kicked a serious foe and reaffirmed his love of life. From then on, Palmer became a fierce advocate for PSA testing and for fighting cancer—head on, just like Arnie did.