Devon Still shares a unique bond with his daughter Leah, a closeness that they both cherish. When Leah was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma in 2014, at just four years old, she was given a 50/50 chance of survival.
“It’s like you’re being hit by a train,” Still said, explaining how he felt when he received the news. “Your whole world is turned around.”
Emotionally distraught, his performance on the field began to suffer. Struggling at team practices with the Cincinnati Bengals, the team on which he played at the time, Devon considered leaving football behind.
“It was that one point in time in my life that I didn’t know if I was going to be called Dad again by her,” Still shared.
The Bengals moved Still to the practice squad, which gave the star athlete the chance to spend more time with Leah. After Sunday games, he would fly back to Philadelphia to be with his daughter. When Still walked through the door, Leah would light up with renewed energy, knowing her father was there.
There were a lot of ups and down on Leah’s cancer journey. On days when Leah was having a more difficult time, Devon and his family would go to Walgreens for necessities to make Leah feel more comfortable. “They really helped us never feel alone.”
When Devon went public with the news of Leah’s illness, the support he received from the NFL, his fans, his family and his Walgreens family played a vital role in Leah’s battle. “The days that we were really having a hard time with what Leah was going through, we leaned on them and they really helped us never feel alone.”
What advice does Still have for families fighting the disease? “Always remain strong. What you want to do is try to find a victory in every single day,” he says. “The mountain may look so big, but if you look at the small victories you continue to chop away at that mountain every day. It gets easier.”
On March 25, 2015, Devon Still announced, via Instagram, that Leah was in remission.
“Now, every day, I wake up and I just feel blessed.”
Visit Walgreens.com/Cancer to learn more about Walgreens cancer support services.