Chris Spielman is used to strong opponents. As a football standout from Massillon, Ohio and The Ohio State Buckeyes, he played with heart and found himself a spot in the NFL. His toughest opponent, by far, has been the one he is still battling – the breast cancer disease that claimed the life of his wife Stephanie.
Hospice of Dayton® will present Chris Spielman presenting on “Living with Hope” about his determination to find a cure for breast cancer. The event, which is free to the public, will be held at 7 pm at the Victoria Theatre on Wednesday, October 24. Tickets are available, first come with limited seating, by using the event link on this website or by calling 937-256-8140. The event is offered as a gift to the community from Hospice of Dayton®, intended to express appreciation for the support the organization has received in over three decades of providing care to patients.
Spielman was a two-time All American while playing with The Ohio State Buckeyes, and followed his college career with eleven years in the NFL with the Detroit Lions, Buffalo Bills and Cleveland Browns. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2010, and became an NFL studio-show analyst for Fox Sports Net. Spielman then joined ESPN as a broadcast analyst as well as studio analyst for college football.
Spielman married his high school sweetheart, Stefanie, in 1989. In 1994 they welcomed their daughter Madison to the family. Then at age 30 Stephanie was diagnosed with breast cancer and became an advocate for breast-cancer detection and research. Husband Chris spent the 1998 football season caring for Stephanie instead of being on the field. His football career ended when he was forced to retire from the Cleveland Browns after suffering from a recurrent neck injury.
As Stefanie’s cancer battle continued, both Spielmans focused on raising awareness and fuding for the Stefanie Spielman Fund for Breast Cancer Research at The James Cancer Hospital on the OSU campus. Stefanie lost her battle with the disease on November 19, 2009 at the age of 42. The couple’s 1998 goal of raising $250,000 for The James Cancer Hospital surpassed $10 million dollars this past April.
Their journey is the focus of the book “That’s Why I’m Here – The Chris and Stefanie Spielman Story” published in 2012. Signed copies of the book will be available for purchase at the Victoria Theatre appearance October 24.