“Win the battle in front of you and collectively we win the fight.” A mantra that we can all use when facing a life threatening challenge like cancer.
My name is Anthony Catalano. In July of 2011, I was diagnosed with a rare form of non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. No one and no family is ever truly prepared for when life throws you a challenge like this. As a young 27 year old former professional athlete in top mental and physical condition, realizing something wasn’t right with my body and discovering it was cancer came as a shock to us all. It started with continuous night sweats, extreme exhaustion and aggressively growing cancerous cells in the lymph nodes on the left side of my neck. This led to multiple biopsies and pathology reports to ultimately being diagnosed with Large B-cell, T Rich Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Each and every day that I woke up during those treatment months I mentally prepared myself to tackle cancer with a HEAD ON attitude. I didn’t know it at the time, but my entire soccer career prepared me for this chapter in my life. After years of collegiate and professional experience facing opponents on the field, my focus now was to come head to head with my toughest challenger yet- cancer. I always knew that this was going to be a short period of my long, fulfilling life ahead. Whether it was chemotherapy or radiation treatment, blood drawing, PET scan, or a simple checkup, my approach was always the same- it was as if I were lacing up the boots, putting on my guards and heading out on the soccer field to battle. There’s a mantra my coach from Elon University coined to get us going before a big game; “Win the Battle in Front of You and Collectively we Win the Fight.” To this day that phrase saved my life and helped my family and I win the fight against cancer. Above all else, my family gave me the strength and courage to handle this challenge of a lifetime and without them I would not have won the battle. Everything my parents and family taught me in my life meant more to me then in that difficult time than it ever had before, and I will never forget that with all my heart. KEEP KICKIN encompasses every aspect of who I am as a person and now as a cancer survivor. From my soccer career as a kid, to a three year walk-on Div. 1 student-athlete at Elon University, which led to becoming Elon’s first ever Pro soccer player. With a professional athletic career that took me both domestically & internationally, I always kept kickin’ against all odds to achieve my goals and dreams. From my fight against non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, facing 6 Rounds of Chemotherapy and 3 weeks of Radiation, I kept fighting, never allowing myself to give up on life, when I have so much to live for. NOW, to my life after cancer proving that I am still here kickin. I’ve learned to take one step and one day at a time by moving my life forward with a positive, new perspective and attitude towards life. I have been given a second chance and each day I appreciate it for every moment that it brings. I have promised myself, my family and my friends I will ALWAYS continue to KEEP KICKIN’. Life throws all of us challenges at some point in our journey. It is how we deal with that challenge and the outlook you have that determines the outcome. My goal in life is clear and it is to help inspire people to work hard, live as happy as they possibly can and always keep kickin’ through every challenge they face. I aspire to do my part to give back and contribute my time by raising money for both those facing the same challenge as I did and those working tirelessly to find a cure. Please donate to our organization and give those dealing with blood cancers the opportunity to KEEP KICKIN vs. Cancer! Thank you so much for all of you who have been in my corner supporting me during that difficult time in my life. We collectively can all help make a difference and help cure blood cancers!
Strength & Courage
Survivor & President
Keep Kickin’s mission is to raise funds and awareness for blood cancer research to accelerate the discovery and development of therapies and cures. We are a local non-profit foundation dedicated to continuously coordinating initiatives to raise money, awareness and the spirits of those affected, giving others the chance to KEEP KICKIN’ vs. CANCER!
A world where there is a cure for blood-related cancers and diseases, and everyone has the resources and support needed to defeat this life-altering opponent.