At only 19 years old, Matt Driscoll has been through more rough times than many elderly people. The Akron, Ohio native has been battling cancer for the past three and a half years and was recently declared cancer-free.


As Matt walked down the hall of Akron Children’s Hospital to ring the hospital’s bell signifying that he is cancer-free, he looked back at some of the events of his tumultuous treatment.



Back in 2016, Matt was a sophomore and star athlete at Walsh Jesuit High School. a member of both the school’s football and basketball teams. Confiding to reporters from Good Morning America Matt said that he was in great shape and that he never thought he would get seriously sick.

As Matt went about his classes during the day and after school practices, he began noticing problems with his health. When Matt ran, he would have difficulty breathing. He also noticed that his lymph nodes were swelling. Both a wide receiver and quarterback, Matt didn’t think much of the symptoms and chose to play through the pain. After nearly passing out several times, Matt was rushed to the hospital where medical professionals diagnosed him as having acute lymphoblastic leukemia.



Matt and his parents, Ann and Jerry Driscoll, were stunned by the diagnosis. Despite the heavy burden of the disease he carried, Matt remained determined to win his life back. The physical toll of his treatment was incredibly costly, however. Due to the aggressiveness of his cancer and the harsh chemotherapy he was subjected to, Matt went from an athletic 140-pound kid to skin and bones only weighing 86 pounds. The chemotherapy made Matt so sick and susceptible to outside infection that he nearly died from a fungal infection in his lungs.

Despite all the forces arrayed against him, Matt never stopped being an optimist. In the middle of his treatment, the young man gave an inspiring speech to his football team, encouraging them to take every opportunity presented to them because you never know which snap might be your last.



Once again walking down that hallway, Matt tore through a makeshift finish line as his family, friends, and the hospital staff threw confetti. With tears in his eyes, Matt rang the bell and let the world know that he had conquered cancer and his long ordeal was finally over. Speaking to Good Morning America, Matt said that ringing the bell was overwhelming for him and without a doubt the best moment of his life.

Akron Children’s Hospital told Good Morning America that Matt has a bright future ahead of him and thanked their doctors and nurses for all the work they did to help the young man. The hospital also applauded Matt’s family and friends for supporting him through all his treatments.



Matt is currently enrolled as a freshman at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he is majoring in business. Giving Good Morning America his final words of wisdom for those who have been inspired by his story, Matt says to remember that 10 percent of everything is what happens to you and 90 percent is how you react to it.

In the end, Matt’s story highlights the power of positivity and modern medicine. While cancer tried to bring him down, Matt never gave up and was bolstered by a team of amazing doctors and nurses wielding the most advanced medical technology.




What do you think of Matt’s story? How do you remain positive in the face of overwhelming odds? Let us know in the comments and be sure to pass this article along to others.


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