Chat with Nicole Hester
In the 15 years since The V Foundation for Cancer Research was founded by ESPN and Jim Valvano, the foundation has raised more than $80 million. The organization has also awarded cancer research grants in 38 states and the District of Columbia. The V Foundation started with the dream of Valvano, the passionate and committed former NC State basketball coach and award-winning broadcaster, as he battled cancer. For more information, or to donate to the V Foundation, call 1-800-4-JimmyV or go here. Every cent of every donation goes directly to cancer research. To see a list of games on ESPN in support of Jimmy V Week, go here.
After being declard cancer-free in the fall of 2007, Hester rejoined the team and fought to regain her form on the court. She powered Drexel to an 18-12 record and she had a team best 45.6 shooting percentage on 3-pointers. Her strong return earned Hester the 2008 V Foundation Comeback Award.
Send your questions now and join Hester Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET!
Craig (Norwich, CT)
I just wanted to give you my congratulations on becoming cancer-free. I have family who have/are battling cancer, and I know it's not fun.
Nicole Hester (1:09 PM)
Thank you. I send my regards to your family. Keep fighting.
How serious was the condition when you were diagnosed?
Nicole Hester (1:10 PM)
To me it was very serious.
Nicole was there ever a time when you thought you would never play basketball again?
Nicole Hester (1:11 PM)
Definitely. A couple of times while I was going through treatment and also when I started playing basketball again.
How is the season looking for Drexel this season?
Nicole Hester (1:12 PM)
It's ok right now but you never know until we start conference season. We are a young team so it's going to take time but I think we will be ok. And it's always nice to have Dabie!
Did you know anything about Hodgkin's before you were diagnosed?
Nicole Hester (1:13 PM)
Not at all. I had no clue about it but the first thing I did once I found out was reseach information about it.
Did you have any signs or symptoms that something was wrong before you saw the doctor?
Nicole Hester (1:14 PM)
Yes. It started with the one lump that was there for a while. A couple of times in practice I wasn't able to make my sprints and I got out of breathe quickly and thats when I was told to go see a doctor.
When you were fighting cancer, did you look at that Jimmy V speech to remind you to never give up?
Nicole Hester (1:15 PM)
I heard about it but I didn't research it until after I met his brother. Thats when I started to learn more about it.
Davey T. (Portland)
What's it like playing college hoops in Philly? And was everyone going crazy on campus when the Phillies won the World Series?
Nicole Hester (1:17 PM)
(laughing) It's crazy. The fans in Philly are great. They either love you or hate you. After the World Series the city went crazy. We were told by our coaches to stay in so that we won't get hurt.
how did it feel to get the Jimmy V Comeback award?
Nicole Hester (1:18 PM)
It was exciting. I wasn't sure at the time if I deserved it or not but now that I look back, I'm very honored to receive this award.
Randy (Clearwater, FL)
Did your teammates take it easy on you in practice when you first came back?
Nicole Hester (1:19 PM)
(laughing) They did and it frustrated me. I talked to them about it and things went back to normal.
How has cancer affected your game the most?
Nicole Hester (1:21 PM)
I think over all, I was out of shape. Getting back into shape to play at the pace of a college game was hard. Also in the beginning it affected my breathing because I had damage to my lungs.
Do you want to play in the WNBA?
Nicole Hester (1:22 PM)
I would like to play oversees because I like to travel but playing in the WNBA would be just as great!
Nicole Hester (1:23 PM)
Thank you for all the support! GO DRAGONS!!!
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