Devon Still Reveals Daughter’s Battle With Cancer Is Not Over, Vows to Keep the Faith

Leah Still watches her father, Devon, play for the first time live since he debuted in the NFL in 2012. (Andrew Weber/USA TODAY Sports)
Leah Still watches her father, Devon, play for the first time live since he debuted in the NFL in 2012. (Andrew Weber/USA TODAY Sports)

Bengals defensive tackle Devon Still announced over social media Sunday the cancer treatment his daughter Leah has been undergoing has not fully worked. Still revealed on his Instagram account that the family received test results showing cancer cells remained in his 4-year-old daughter.

“I wanted to hear so bad that my daughter’s cancer was gone and when I didn’t it hurt me bad,” wrote Still on his Instagram account. “I couldn’t even bring myself to tell my family the results without breaking down. I honestly just wanted to shut down from every one. But I understand that blessings don’t happen when I want them to, they happen when they’re suppose to. So we are going to keep faith and keep fighting no matter what.”

Leah Still was diagnosed with Stage IV neuroblastoma last June. She has undergone surgery and treatments in Philadelphia since. Her story became of national interest when it was revealed that the Bengals had been allowing Still extra time away from the team to tend to Leah’s needs during offseason workouts and training camp.

Still was among the Bengals’ final cuts but signed to the practice squad, enabling him to keep his NFL health insurance. He was re-signed to the 53-man roster on Sept. 10.

Leah Still was able to attend the Bengals game on Nov. 6 against Cleveland. The Bengals were able to present Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center with a check worth more than $1.3 million in donations for pediatric cancer research during an in-game ceremony. The money was raised through sales of Still’s No. 75 jersey.

Multiple other NFL teams honored Still and recognized Leah throughout the season, including New Orleans head coach Sean Payton purchasing 100 jerseys. The New England Patriots paid tribute to Leah during a game against the Bengals on Oct. 5 with a video and having their cheerleaders wear Still jerseys. Patriots owner Robert Kraft donated $25,000 to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Indianapolis owner Jim Irsay donated $10,000 to the cause.

Still has been honored as the Bengals recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award for demonstrating courage and sportsmanship as well as being a community role model despite difficult circumstances. The annual award is voted on by each team’s players. The Cincinnati chapter of the Pro Football Writers of America selected Still as its “Good Guy” award winner for his cooperation with the media throughout the season. Still has used Leah’s health situation as a platform to raise awareness and funding for pediatric cancer research.

Kevin Goheen

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