ORONO, Maine — Maine coach Shawn Walsh, who was diagnosed with kidney cancer in June, has gone back to work following the first of two 20-day treatment cycles at the Johnson Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCLA.
Walsh is expected to begin the next immunotherapy treatment cycle within the next month.
According to the Bangor (Maine) Daily News, Walsh is still feeling the side effects of the treatment, including queasiness, but it much better than he was while the treatment was taking place. Meanwhile, Walsh has remained optimistic.
“It’s so nice to be back. I feel good. My jump is back,” Walsh told the Daily News. “Everything has gone well.”
Of course, in cancer treatment, “well” is a relative term. Walsh had to face the side effects such as a racing heart, chills, dry skin and vomiting.
Still, Walsh felt well enough while in Los Angeles to play golf with actor Kurt Russell and former Maine (now L.A. Kings) forward Bob Corkum. According to the article, Walsh stayed at the house of Russell and longtime actress girlfriend Goldie Hawn during his time in Los Angeles. Walsh met Russell during the 1999 Frozen Four in Anaheim.
Just days after being diagnosed with the cancer, Walsh had a kidney removed. He chose the aggressive immunotherapy treatment from among a number of options. The treatment is designed to boost the immune system into aggressively attacking cancer cells.
Walsh returned to Orono and met with his team for the first time on Monday.
“It was one of the most rewarding speeches I have ever given because it felt so good to be talking to a team again,” said Walsh to the Daily News.