Bob Valvano on Reflects on Jimmy V Award and Losing His Brother
ESPN’s Bob Valvano joins Jeff Thurn on Friday’s edition of Overtime.
Valvano (of ESPN and ESPN Radio) talks about Stuart Scott's emotional speech as he received the Jimmy V Award on Wednesday night at the ESPY's:
"He did a really good job. Yeah, I saw him before the show. Our seat was where, there's really only entrance into the theater where the people were down on the lower level, and that was right in front of our seat. We got there pretty earlier and as it got closer to showtime, it started to back up there and everybody had to stand right in front of us for 30 or 45 seconds. That included Stu and so, I jumped up and gave him a hug and he is obviously inviting a very, very demanding fight. He's so frail, thin, and gets in there doing mixed martial arts and at a gym working out. Wonderfully inspiring story, but the fact is when you really have known him as long as we have and get to give him a hug, you really realize this guy has been through the ringer and he touched a lot of people. Was very respectful to my brother Jim, and inspiring. It was a very emotional night. I mean the Michael Sam thing was emotional, the very first Pat Tillman Award. So, that's good for a fun night. It's still fun. I know Drake was really funny. It's got a lot of substance now, and a lot of emotion and Stu was clearly right in the middle of it."
How hard was it for Bob to go through the passing of his brother, Jimmy?
"It was tough. The day he gave that speech. I couldn't help what Stuart said, couldn't help but think back to that. Stuart talked last week he was in the hospital with tubes coming out of everywhere. Everybody laughs, but I know what that is like. I don't personally know, but I know seeing that from Jim's case. The very morning of that show, we weren't even sure if he was going to be able to make to the theater. I mean he was in really bad shape. He was vomiting. He was weak. He was in pain. All of the bad things that cancer brings. We were all there and we weren't even sure he was going to make it and then we used to joke all the time in our house with the refrigerator when the light goes on, Jim does five minutes of stand-up. I should have known when the big lights were on the big stage, he would rally, and to be honest with you, I didn't even know. I found out all that stuff that morning. I was not in New York. I was still coaching and with my team at that time. People don't remember the ESPY's were in February until they were moved to the summer until a few months later. So, I was still with my team and unable to go to New York, but I say, boy, you looked great on T.V. last night and talked to my mom and nieces and say really, well, you should have been with us yesterday. Mike Krzyzewski told me Jim told him please whatever you do when it's over, come up the stage and get me. I don't want to hobble down the stairs. If you remember at that speech, they really help him down the stairs. It was not just a congratulatory hug. That's was I'm not sure I am going to make it down. So, the other thing that is amazing. You talk about reflecting. I watch the athletes refer to Jim and keep it subtle and mention he was the one that introduced to Stuart. It's just kind of so mainstream right now. We did that auction all day on ESPN Radio the day of the ESPY's and there's people donating things from MLB, NFL, NHL. It's really humbling they have all rallied around basically Jim's speech, and the message. He would be very proud, but I also he was a pain in the butt to be honest with you. He would of also said, have we cured anything yet? No, okay let's get back to work. Let's go."
To hear more of Thurn’s interview with Valvano, listen below:
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