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I am the Someone He Loved

Jim Valvano’s daughter and cancer survivor Jamie Valvano shares memories and reflections on her dad and her cancer journey.

“Growing up, I loved when people often commented on my likeness to my Dad. In many of our family pictures we had our faces pressed together to highlight our similarities. Yet, there was one common trait that was hidden. My father unknowingly carried and passed the BRCA2 gene onto me. 

I was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 33. Immediately, I called my Dad’s oncologist and now V Foundation board member, Dr. Joe Moore, who helped me navigate my recovery. I was now walking in my Dad’s footsteps as I, too, became a cancer patient.

One morning, while I was sick between treatments, I heard my dad’s voice. It was a quote from his speech. This time, it had a deeper meaning.

‘We are starting The V Foundation for Cancer Research. It may not save my life, it may save my children’s lives. It may save someone you love.’

I was the someone he loved that may be saved. In 2023, I celebrated being an 18-year cancer survivor. I’m alive today because of cancer research. A day does not go by that I don’t thank my Dad for having the dream to establish the V Foundation for Cancer Research.”

Jamie’s Story

The Speech

In 1993, Jim stepped onto the stage at the inaugural ESPYS Award Show and delivered a speech we will never forget.

Our Story

The V

Founded by ESPN and legendary basketball coach Jim Valvano, the V Foundation has one goal in mind: to achieve Victory Over Cancer®.

Who We Are

The Research

Since 1993, we’ve awarded over $310 million in cancer research grants nationwide and are one of the premier supporters of cutting-edge cancer research.

The Science That Drives Us

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