Greetings on a very significant anniversary for all of us here at the LAF. 10//2 is the date back in ’96 when Lance was given his cancer diagnosis and his life changed forever. To many of us, it’s an example of a day one faces a critical cross roads: How will I choose to deal with this crisis? If you’re Lance, you choose to fight like hell, despite the odds, despite the pain, and throughout the inevitable doubts and fears. And you choose the responsibility of the cured sharing your story, trying to effect positive change and going on with a great life. But I’ll let him tell you about it. Below is the transcript of his statement to reporters a week after his diagnosis twelve years ago. If you get a chance, give it a read and send us your thoughts. Many thanks and LIVESTRONG!
Katherine McLane

Lance Armstrong Press Conference
Prepared Statement
October 8, 1996

I would like to thank everyone for coming or for calling in to hear what I have to say today. I have some news regarding my health to share with you.

On Wednesday, October 2nd, I was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Prior to seeing my doctor last week, I had been experiencing swelling and pain in one of my testicles and had coughed up some blood. On Thursday, October 3rd, I underwent surgery at St. David’s Hospital here in Austin to have the malignant testicle removed and the surgery was successful. A CT-Scan was also performed the same day. The CT-Scan revealed that my condition has spread into my abdomen. In terms of degrees of the disease, my condition is considered to be between moderate and advanced and, thus, yesterday I began my first day of chemotherapy treatment.

I will undergo chemotherapy for at least twelve weeks and then, depending on how I respond to the treatment, may have to undergo more chemotherapy or other procedures to fight this disease. I have the utmost faith in all the doctors with whom I am working and I am determined to fight this disease and to prevail. I would like to say a special thank you to the staff at St. David’s hospital for making my stay there as comfortable as possible and for protecting my privacy until I was prepared to share this news with the press. Due to this consideration, I have been able to speak with all of my sponsors, with Team Motorola, and with my new team, Team Cofidis, prior to this press conference.

My oncologist, Dr. J. Dudley Youman, is unable to be here today. However, he has told me that the cure rate for testicular cancer in the advanced stage is between 65% and 85%. Further, if I do beat this disease I have been assured that there is no reason that I cannot make a full and complete recovery.

For now, I must focus on my treatment. However, I want you all to know that I intend to beat this disease, and further, I intend to ride again as a professional cyclist. I am unable to say today when I will be back in the peloton but hold out hope that I might still participate in the 1997 season.

I want to finish by saying that I intend to be an avid spokesperson for cancer research and awareness, particularly testicular cancer, once I have beaten the disease. Had I been more aware of the symptoms, I believe I would have seen a doctor before my condition had advanced to this stage. I want this to be a positive experience and I want to take this opportunity to help others who might someday suffer from the same circumstance I face today.

During the next few months, I will be undergoing my treatment and will be surrounded by my family and close friends. It will be a difficult time for me and I would appreciate that any press inquiries into my progress be communicated through my agent, Bill Stapleton. However, I will be available to answer your questions for the next few minutes. Thank you.


  1. didy (belgium) says:

    after 12 years it still makes you shut up and think about it!
    he came back so strong, amazing.
    hope he comes back real strong this time too. thankfully he’s still(very) healthy and it’s an other kind of comeback.
    i’m looking forward to it and think a lot of him today and try to be as strong as he was and still is.
    love you lance!!!

  2. Jennifer says:

    I remember that like it was yesterday ; I am tearing up as I write this. You have come such a long, long way and have shined a light on this horrible disease. I wish you much happiness on this special anniversay, and know that you are making a huge difference in this fight. I wear yellow every chance I get to spread awareness, and today I have my LIVESTRONG shirt ( one of many ) to bring special attention to your wonderful 12 years of cancer free. I can’t wait to hear how you spend your anniversary. LIVESTRONG.
    Much Love,

  3. MO says:

    Lance, Godspeed.

  4. Scott Joy says:

    All I can say is, “thank you.” What a difference you’ve made to so many people, including me.

  5. Amazing that such a short time has passed since the LAF began, a fundraising bike ride in Austin, Challenge events across the country, LiveStrong Day in Washingotn DC, and today we’re going global with the fight.

  6. christin says:

    gives me chills every time I read/hear it…you are an inspiration to us all. Thank you for choosing to share your story and for choosing to make a difference.

  7. Ron Bye (NH) says:

    Congrats on another year of survivorship!!!!

    And what a huge difference you have indeed made in so very many lives including mine!

    Here’s to MANY MANY MORE!!

  8. Kathy Smith says:

    12 years WOW congrats and thanks for giving us all something to strive for….

  9. Tom says:

    It’s only this year that I have become fully aware of Lance and his battle with cancer. At my lowest point, my girlfriend was supportive and understanding enough to buy me Lance’s books. He has been truly inspirational and has shown me the importance of attitude, family and self belief as well as the importance of listening to, trusting and believing in the people who have the knowledge…the nurses, specialists, surgeons and oncologists. It’s great to see Lance taking the battle against cancer global and I truly wish him well in his health and comeback in 2009! Livestrong!

  10. Angela Freeman says:

    “Thank You” just isn’t enough for all the things that you have done for so many with this disease. It has truly changed my life and the lives of my family members. Keep up the amazing work you do!
    Forever grateful,
    Angela Freeman

  11. kim says:

    here’s to the first dozen years cancer free! go mellow johnny!

  12. NV says:

    Dear Lance,

    Just finished Every Second Counts. I think you must change your name to ‘Chance’ Armstrong!

    What I liked most about the book was your genuiness to focus on your thoughts and actions as any normal guy, rather than on the heroism that surrounded you, which you could have easily leveraged.

    You have written so beautifully abt teamwork, sharing, family, etc., but what makes me wonder is that if you could win Tour de France so many times, why could you not save your marriage with your dutiful wife? Was it such an uphill task?

    When I was at Harvard in 2005, my classmates would wear the Livestrong band. I then thought that this was another Harvard fad.

    Your book changed all that.

    Thanks a ton and keep sharing!



  13. Linda S. says:

    Thank you Lance! It took courage to share your story but what a Difference it has made for those of us who came after you.

    Yellow is courage, yellow is hope, yellow is in all of us.

    Thanks!!! LIVESTRONG

  14. Lance – Congratulations on your 12 year anniversary of health. I admire your commitment to cancer awareness, prevention, research and cure, both at home…and now with the CGI. Your energy and relentless pursuit of success ,both on your bike, and in the global community, is inspiring.

    Please see my previous blog in the “staff” section, under the CGI heading. I feel hopelessly stuck in a local battle to find a source for chemotherapy for an uninsured patient with metastatic testicular cancer. I know full well that you, our the LAF, can not win every battle…but if you have any suggestions, or influence in this case…I would be grateful. Thanks ! LIVESTRONG

  15. Jere Carpentier says:

    I am immediately caught by the positive attitude and “plan” to be well from the very beginning. This is a very important key element in fulfilling that… I’ve heard you have to “name it to claim it”..and that is exactly what you did.
    Keep naming it…keep winning…you’ve got it in you and we are all backing you!!

    Jere Carpentier

  16. R Mullins says:

    I am thankful for all the reasearch to beat this disease. In Feb.1994 I was diagnosed with testicular cancer. I remember well hearing about Lance and thinking how he must feel. I now have three son’s and mountain bike everyday that I can.

  17. Mendi Tramell says:

    Dear Lance,
    I have a 19 year old son who was diagnosed with testicular cancer 9/26/08. Embryonal carsanomia-germ cell was found. He already had his right testicle removed. We would like to find the right doctor who is aggressive enough to look at all options and be educated in this type of cancer. We research daily and undecided on how to handle this.I want the best for my son and worried about making the wrong decision.

  18. Thank you LAF for helping in the fight for access to care. I have heard from your great staff and I know that they will help in the fight to find a team that will allow my patient with metastatic testicular cancer to continue with his chemotherapy that was interrupted with the loss of a functional UTMB-Galveston due to Hurricane Ike.

  19. Rob says:

    That news conferance saved my life. I had never heard of testicular cancer before.

    I was riding a Marta train in Atlanta, and I found a newspaper on the floor. Those of you who know MARTA, it is a clean train. The newspaper was the Front page of the USA Today where this news Lances’s statement appeared, front and secong page. I read it with great interest, and they included a TSE instruction box.

    I went home and did the TSE, and sure enough, I had a lump on my buddy. Took a few weeks for anyone to take it all serious enough, and it got to the point where I was doubled over in pain. Took the Dr 3 seconds to say ” I think you have cancer”.

    The Ironic thing was, that the USA Today with Lance’s announcement, was 2 weeks old. I still have it today, as it saved my life. and certainly brought great awareness to Tc, and now a global battle of all cancer.

    So thank you for reprint that. I am foever greatful that he took the courage and risk to alot of things to make that statement. I am sure it saved many lives. I know it saved mine.

  20. Kevin Johnson says:

    Hi Lance

    Just lost my 44 year old Cousin to cancer yesterday. I really hate this disease. Way too young to die and he leaves behind two boys in their twenties. If you and the world leaders can do anything to prevent this happening to other people it would save people so much pain. I pray you will find a cure soon.
    Also, go ride your socks off for victory in July ’09 Lance,we hope to be there on the road side for stage or two. God Bless.

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