Jul 23rd, 2021
**Trigger warning - this episode contains conversations about cancer**
Found a lump? Get yourself checked out!
At the age of 17 Dylan Tombides had the world at his feet. A youngster at the West Ham United academy, he was extremely well thought of, both as a footballer and as a person. He was progressing well, and was part of the Australian national team at youth level. In 2011, during the U-17 World Cup, Dylan was subject to a random drugs test, standard practice for football matches at that level. Not long after Dylan was given the results of that test. He had either tested positive for a banned substance, or he had a tumour.
After testing positive for testicular cancer Dylan was determined to fight the disease, and continue his pursuit of a career in professional football. Over the next three years Dylan received a variety of treatments for his cancer, whilst remaining a part of the youth set up at West Ham, and representing his country. In September 2012, less than 18 months after his original diagnosis, Dylan made his first team debut for West Ham, replacing Gary O'Neil as a second half substitute against Wigan Athletic in the League Cup.
Tragically in April 2014 Dylan's organs failed and he died, aged just 20. Following his death, Tracy, Dylan's Mum, along with other members of the Tombides family, founded DT38 Foundation, in memory of Dylan. The foundation raises awareness of testicular cancer amongst young men, in an attempt to prevent other families from enduring the sadness and the hurt that they have.
Today we speak to Tracy about Dylan, and we're incredibly grateful to to her for giving up some of her time to do so. This isn't an easy listen, but as with many of our episodes, we believe it to be an incredibly important conversation to have, for so many reasons.
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To find out more about DT38 Foundation, head to their website:
Lads, If you are unsure about the signs and symptoms of testicular cancer you should be looking out for, here are some useful links:
Testicular Cancer UK
Testicular Cancer - NHS conditions