Aaron Walker// Greenville Triumph #8, Midfielder // music lover// enjoys cooking// favorite soccer player – Steven Gerrard// dog lover // Will the US men win a World Cup in your lifetime – Yes

A Team Approach to Survivorship

“I’m far too familiar with the impact cancer has had on my teammates.” 

Aaron Walker, a captain on the Greenville Triumph professional soccer team, has been playing team sports for as long as he can remember. And while his connection to cancer is personal, sadly, he’s seen the toll it can take on his teammates.

Real Men Wear Pink

Aaron chose to participate in the American Cancer Society’s Real Men Wear Pink campaign to honor those that have been impacted by breast cancer and raise money to support the search for a cure. 

“Many of my teammates throughout the years have had mothers that have been impacted by breast cancer. It’s way too common an occurrence. Participating in this campaign provides me with an opportunity to have a positive impact on a tough scenario.” 

“The team comes together to be there for the family. This is another way for me to show I’m there for them.”

Engagement and Inspiration from the Cancer Community

“Throughout the years I’ve been involved in team engagements with cancer patients at healthcare facilities. It’s amazing the impact these engagements can have on the patients in these facilities. I really enjoy the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of these patients.” 

The Greenville Triumph encourage the community to visit their facility. “I’m really excited about my participation in the Real Men Wear Pink campaign. The Triumph will have a special ‘Making Strides Against Breast Cancer’-themed game in October where a segment of the proceeds will be donated to the American Cancer Society. I can’t share too many details but I can say that we will integrate pink into our uniforms for that game. It’s going to be really special.” 

“The concept of community resonates with me. Having been a member of a team the idea of uniting together in a venue for solace is comforting.”  

“The concept and the driving force behind Cancer Survivors Park is incredible. I love the idea of having a venue for solace, both the good and the bad.” 

Lessons Learned

“I’ve been a member of a team since I was a kid. But the essence of what makes a team successful remains – you’ve got to stick together.”

Aaron, who serves as Captain for the Triumph, noted, “you can’t put your needs before that of the team.” 

“This is my connection to cancer. I can recognize when my teammates are feeling down, what’s bringing them down and what they are looking for to pick them back up.”

“We’ve got a super fan, his name is Hudson, that has been incredibly inspirational for the team. When his schedule permits, he’s there for our games. We’ve known him for a while now and we’ve been watching him continue grow up. We were there when he was released from the hospital and he’s in high school now.”  

“Hudson understands his limitations and he can’t physically do what his mind wants him to do. Knowing that he would love to do what I do keeps me grounded.”

Interview by Michael McCullough / Photography by Patrick Cox

Patrick Cox Photography:
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