Football Quarterback Len Dawson Dies of Cancer, Actress Jennette McCurdy Discusses Her Mom’s Cancer in Memoir and More


From the death of a football Hall of Famer and a golf champion to actress and former Nickelodeon star Jennette McCurdy discussing her mother’s breast cancer in her memoir, “I’m Glad My Mom Died,” here’s what’s happening in the cancer space this week.

Hall-of-Fame quarterback Len Dawson died after receiving a diagnosis of prostate cancer.

Len Dawson, former quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs who helped lead the team to victory in Superbowl IV in 1970 — for which he received the MVP award — died after entering hospice care earlier this month. The 87-year-old had prostate cancer, according to a statement by his family.

Dawson was nicknamed “Lenny the Cool,” and after he retired from the sport in 1975, the Chiefs retired his number (16) when he was admitted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1987. From 1977 to 1982, Dawson served as an analyst for NBC Sports, and then joined the Chiefs broadcast team from 1985 to 2017.

"Len was always grateful, and many times overwhelmed by the countless bonds he made during his football and broadcast careers," his family said in a statement.

In her tell-all book, former child star Jennette McCurdy discusses her mother’s breast cancer experience.

Jennette McCurdy, who starred on the Nickelodeon shows “iCarly” and “Sam and Cat” discussed her mother’s metastatic breast cancer experiences in her recently released memoir, “I’m Glad My Mom Died,” which topped the New York Times Bestseller list for nonfiction.

The actress’s mom, Debra McCurdy, was initially diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer in 1995, and then went into remission for more than a decade before the disease eventually caused her death in 2013, at the peak of Jennette’s fame.

"Even though the facts of it are so sad, I can tell that the story itself gives Mom a deep sense of pride. Of purpose," Jennette wrote in the book, before mentioning that Debra would mention her cancer diagnosis to be able to sit in on otherwise closed acting classes for Jennette. "Like she, Debra McCurdy, was put on this earth to be a cancer survivor and live to tell the tale to any and everyone … at least five to ten times."

Ecuador president traveled to the United States for cancer treatment.

Guillermo Lasso, the president of Ecuador, traveled to The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston this week to receive treatment for melanoma on his right eyelid.

Lasso, a former businessman who became president in May 2021, said that his trip and cancer treatments will not affect his duty as president. "I feel very good," Lasso told reporters before leaving for treatment. "It is an issue that must be dealt with to prevent it from spreading in the future, in this case, all over my face."

Golf champion Tom Weiskopf died of pancreatic cancer.

Tom Weiskopf, an Open Championship winner and 16-time PGA Tour winner died last weekend after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in December 2020. He was 79 years old.

In 1973 — the year that ESPN credits as his best — Weiskopf won seven championships, including the British Open (where the victor is awarded the Claret Jug) and the World Series of Golf at Firestone. After his career playing on golf courses ended, he continued to gain fame designing them, making contributions to famous courses such as TPC Scottsdale, Olympic Club, Silverleaf Club, Troon North Golf Club and Yellowstone Club in Montana, according to CBS. Weiskopf also was involved in golf broadcasting for CBS and ABC.

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