Josh, who played football for Oregon followed by 11 or 12 years in the NFL, is now back here and is the full-time chaplain for the University of Oregon football team. He shared where he’s been, where he is, and what the future holds for him and his family. Notes and highlights from his presentation:
- Josh was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 23 when he was new in the NFL with a prognosis that he would likely not survive.
- He was treated at OHSU and miraculously recovered. But he ended up with 123k in medical bills because he was 1 week away from health insurance. The Packers raised money for all of his bills.
- His foundation assisted in building a state of the art facility (the Community Cancer Center) and creating a program to support families in his hometown (Roseburg) who are going through treatment and don’t have health insurance.
- Josh “lost” his mother at a young age after her addictions destroyed their family and she moved away where he would be raised by his father. Roseburg became very important to him because the community embraced him and helped him through that very difficult time.
- Josh volunteered once a year with University of Oregon as a mentor and life coach for players that needed guidance. Now he’s a full time chaplain – a trusted advisor and safe place – for the players to come and ask questions and get support.
- Josh feels his job for the players and in life is to help people realize that they can make it through huge obstacles by helping them with perspective. He is inspired to make a difference in this world in the same way his life was truly changed by those God placed in his path.