We always like to see this kind of story because as Duke fans know, Coach K and Duke get a lot of negative attention, much of it unfair.
The truth is that Coach K does an enormous amount of good outside of the basketball world. Since Jim Valvano got sick, Mike Krzyzewski has been passionate about the V Foundation and working against cancer. Periodically we hear stories about him calling or writing people who are in their own lonely struggle against that terrible disease. This is one of those stories.
Gregory S. “Flako” Feldman, like Coach K a guy with deep Illinois roots, retired and then found out he had pancreatic cancer. He was also a huge Duke fan.
A friend decided to see if Coach K would drop him a line and after some work, got through to K who then called Feldman.
He spoke to him for about 20 minutes and obviously encouraged him to fight.
We’re sure he did, but pancreatic cancer is pretty lethal.
Still, can you imagine the medicine that call provided? Aside from the pleasure of speaking to the coach of your favorite team, who took an interest in you and your struggle, your body is in crisis and it affects you on so many levels.
We have no scientific training but it’s hard to not think that happiness and positive emotions make a difference in how your body pushes back.
It was just 20 minutes out of Coach K’s life, and obviously he never sought any attention for doing it, but it must have meant the world to Feldman. We wish more people saw this side of Coach K.
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