[Several updates at bottom, last on May 6, 2011.]
MADRID, Spain (AP) — Seve Ballesteros had surgery to remove a brain tumor, and the 51-year-old golf great was conscious and stable Wednesday.
La Paz hospital said there were no complications from Tuesday's surgery. Spanish state news agency Efe reported the operation lasted 12 hours.
The hospital said a sizable part of the tumor was removed. It was not immediately known if it was malignant and it would be several days before the results were announced.
"Sizable part." Damn. Speedy recovery, Seve.
Seve's homepage, which I wish I'd seen before:
Madrid, October 12th, 2008
“Once that I have been able to inform my three kids (two of them were not in Spain) and their mother, I now can inform you about the illness that I am suffering. After a thorough medical check-up realized at La Paz Hospital in Madrid, a brain tumour has been detected.
During the whole of my career I have been one of the bests facing obstacles in golf courses. Now I want to be the best facing the most difficult match of my life, with all my strength, and counting on all of you who are sending me encouraging messages.
Next Tuesday I will have a biopsy performed, and then the doctors will decide how to proceed.
I have always felt very close to people who suffer serious life threatening diseases, even more severe than mine. I want to remind them that with courage, faith, serenity, confidence and lots of mental strength we have to face every situation no matter how difficult it is.
Now, my wish is to ask for respect for my family and specially for my kids. We will keep you informed.
Lastly, I want to thank from the bottom of my heart all of you for your kind interest and for all your support.”
Thank you very much.
Seve on wikipedia.
Update: More here. (10/23/08)
Update II: Seve sends a message to his fans. (12/31/08)
Update III: February 13, 2009: My spirit is "unshakeable."
Update IV: March 31, 2009. Seve talks to reporters for the first time (BBC):
MADRID (AP) — An emotional Seve Ballesteros has spoken publicly for the first time about his fight against a cancerous brain tumor.
The 51-year-old Ballesteros looked frail and thin in photos published by Spanish sports daily Marca on Tuesday along with the golf great's first interview since he was diagnosed with a malignant tumor in the right side of his brain nearly six months ago.
"This is the most important shot of my life. I'm fighting to win my sixth major," Marca quoted the five-time major winner as saying. "Life has given me a second chance."
I guess I haven't mentioned this before, but my sister Nancy was diagnosed with brain cancer in March, 2003. She went through three surgeries, chemo, radiation, and lived for 18 months longer. She was 42 when she died, and Nancy was the first of my direct family - parents and eleven children - to die. It's weird to say it was a beautiful 18 months, because it was of course full of pain and fear and frustration and anger and more un-fun things, but Nancy was such a beautiful person through all of it, an embodiment of grace that I'm not sure I've ever encountered before, that it really was a high point, along with a very, very low, of my, and mine and her family's, life.
It appears that Seve is a good and graceful fighter of this disease, too. Keep up the good fight, Seve, you still have a lot to give your family and friends, and a bunch of us out here, too.
Just found this PDF at Seve's Web site. It's got some great photos of him working out, and looking damn good.
Update V: Another letter from Seve to fans here.
Update VI: I missed a message dated August 11. Six rounds of chemo finished and radiotherapy started. A few more weeks of that, I guess.
Update VII: March 24, 2010, Seve speaks about Tiger's chances at the Masters.
Update July 9, 2010: Seve will not make it St. Andrews. That's a tough article to read.
Update October 3.
Update May 6, 2011: This is the first we've heard about Seve in a long time, which I've always taken as a good thing. The news today, however, is unfortunately not good:
THE BALLESTEROS FAMILY INFORMS THAT SEVE’S NEUROLOGICAL CONDITION HAS SUFFERED A SEVERE DETERIORATION.
THE FAMILY WILL INFORM ACCORDINGLY ABOUT ANY CHANGE IN HIS HEALTH CONDITION AND TAKES THIS OPPORTUNITY OF THANKING EVERYONE FOR THE SUPPORT THAT BOTH SEVE AND HIS OWN FAMILY HAVE BEEN RECEIVING DURING ALL THIS TIME.
THEY ALSO INDICATE THAT THEY WILL PROMPTLY REPORT ON THE STATE OF THE SPANISH CHAMPION THROUGH THE WEBSITE WWW.SEVEBALLESTEROS.COM