Cancer is a bitch.
We really have no other way to phrase it. It’s an evil that is expected to hit 1.6 million Americans in 2012. Many are able to overcome it, but sadly, many do not. Out of the struggles against cancer, there shines the brightest of lights – hope, heart, strength, and the human body’s sheer will to survive. It’s incredible how much fight some people have inside of them that they never knew existed.
One of those brightly shining lights is from Kate Foster, a 13-year-old CrossFit athlete from Illinois. Kate was diagnosed with leukemia just over fifteen months ago. It was devastating on her family.
“Kids don’t deserve to be sick. They’re so innocent,” said Kate’s dad, Lynn. “But,” as he recalls, “her heart got her through it. She has the heart of a giant. She’s a strong-willed girl, and you don’t tell her no because she’ll find a way to show you she can.”
Kate rarely cried. She stood strong throughout all of the doctors’ appointments, the chemotherapy treatments, and most of all, through the amputation of her left leg. That is an difficult journey for any individual to take, much less for a 13-year-old girl. Kate, a former gymnast and then CrossFitter, was told by doctors that she probably would’ve died from the disease if she hadn’t been in such good physical shape. It was only a year before she returned to the CrossFit gym and her extended “family” of CrossFit community members at Rockford.
People on the outside looked at Kate and expected her to take it easy, that there’s no way she could do certain movements. Watch her. “I’ve got one leg so people are like, ‘You can’t do this.’ I’ll show you I can,” she says unabashedly.
There was very few dry eyes in the Home Depot Center July 14 when young Kate kicked off the start of the a new year of fundraising by CrossFit for Hope with a resounding, “3, 2, 1…Go!” Kate continues to compete at the fitness sport she so dearly loves, while encouraging others to get involved with the fight against cancer.