Devon, Leah Still release new children’s book on confronting cancer
‘It’s the playbook I always wish I had.’
CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Former Cincinnati Bengal Devon Still and his daughter, Leah, won over hearts across the Tri-State when they beat cancer.
Now they’re taking the fight to cancer with a series of books aimed at helping families find their own happy endings.
Leah was diagnosed with a rare form of pediatric cancer in 2014.
On March 25 of the following year, Devon announced doctors had told him the cancer was in remission.
Six years later, 11-year-old Leah remains cancer-free. But the struggle has had a lasting impact on them both.
Devon is retired from football and runs the Still Strong Foundation in Houston to help families financially as they treat childhood cancer. He’s also getting a masters degree from the University of Pennsylvania in applied positive psychology.
The book series, titled “Zara Takes Off,” is all about breaking the communication barrier a cancer diagnosis imposes upon those diagnosed—and those close to them.
“When we first got diagnosed, when the doctors tried to explain what to expect, I had no idea what they were talking about,” Devon explained. “It was like they were speaking a foreign language to me. I had no idea how to explain Leah’s battle with cancer because I didn’t understand it myself. But now there’s a resource to help you learn how to communicate better.”
Devon says it’s the “playbook” he always wishes he had.
“The greatest thing I learned on this journey is that you can’t be afraid to turn the page,” he said.
Leah is doing just that moving on with her life.
“I feel like a normal 11-year-old girl who is going to middle school,” she said. “People tell me a lot that I’m special and, you know, I don’t think about it as much as I used to, so it’s like, just a normal person.”
The Still Strong Foundation is partnering with United Therapeutics to make the book possible.
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