CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – One week ago, the Citadel football family was dealt a crushing blow after the loss of former long snapper Pat Keefe to brain cancer at 25 years old.
“He was unbelievable at his position and much better person than he was a player. Real sad time last week. I got a call about 4:15. You knew it was coming but you’re never truly prepared,” Citadel Sr. Associate Director of Athletic Equipment Kevin Yeager said.
Still grieving, the Bulldogs are now dealing with a new diagnosis.
Junior punter Ben Steele is beginning treatment for lymphoblastic lymphoma.
“I talked to him Saturday, he just had a port put in so they could draw blood administer chemo, things like that. He’s good a tough battle ahead of him, but the prognosis is pretty good,” said Yeager.
A father figure for the team, Yeager started a gofundme page for Ben.
So far its raised over $10,000 in just three days.
“Our team, you know when I look at it, you might have a five dollar guy, you might have a ten dollar guy, a hundred dollar guy. Everybody on our team has contributed to this.”
While specialists may be by themselves during practice or games.
They’re all in this fight together.
“They have a bond within themselves of “us against the world,” and I think that helps with the battle they’re going through with cancer,” Yeager said.
The Citadel family is as tight and close as their class rings.
Now they’re raising two families up in their time of need.