Livestrong: Oklahoman writers share their stories

WHAT LIVESTRONG MEANS TO YOU NOW — Two Oklahoman writers share their stories of wearing the Livestrong bracelet.
by Ryan Aber and Gina Mizell Published: January 20, 2013
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High School writer Ryan Aber

Not long after my daughter was diagnosed with cancer in 2001, I slipped on a Livestrong bracelet.


For about two years the band rarely, if ever, came off. I only stopped wearing it when it snapped.

I didn't wear it for Lance Armstrong, though his story helped.

If he could come back from cancer to reach the pinnacle of his sport, Kaylee could beat cancer and live a normal, full life.

That's what the band meant for me.

Kaylee's been cancer-free for more than 10 years.

I wanted to believe Armstrong's story, that he'd become the top cyclist of all time by perseverance and not by using performance-enhancing drugs.

Over the last few years, though, the realization sank in that the chances Armstrong had accomplished his feats clean were slim.

First, it was the flood of other bikers who were caught up in PED scandals.

Then, when person after person who had been around Armstrong accused him of doping and/or covering up his involvement, the chances seemed even more dim.

So Armstrong's recent admission that he was guilty of doping didn't shake me much. It was just an official acknowledgment of something I already knew.

Still, though, that doesn't diminish what the band did for me — and millions of others like me — during a time when I needed a little boost of support, even if that boost came from within myself.

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by Ryan Aber
Reporter
Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The...
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by Gina Mizell
OSU Sports Reporter
Gina Mizell joined The Oklahoman in August of 2011 as the Oklahoma State beat writer, where she covered the Cowboys' historic run to the Big 12 championship and Fiesta Bowl in her first season on the job. Before arriving in Stillwater, Gina was...
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