Grant Reed | 2000 2019: Ohio State Fan Battling Childhood Tumors Named Cancer 'Michigan'

Grant Reed, who fought brain cancer and loved Ohio State, died Sunday morning, according to a public Facebook post from his father Troy Reed.

Diagnosed with brain cancer at the age of 11 in May 2012, Grant gained national attention when he told his father he had named a tennis ball-sized tumor next to his brain stem "Michigan" after medical staff at Nationwide Children's encouraged him to name his enemy. "Because Ohio State always beats Michigan," Grant had told his father.

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Reed said Sunday on Facebook that Grant died at 6:38 a.m., and that "he won his final victory over M*CH*G*N because it can never hurt him again."

Grant was 18 years old.

"I am blessed in the sense that this child put out more life than I taught him. He is truly my hero," Reed told the Dispatch. "He taught me how to persevere with a smile, but life hands you a bad deal. He definitely gave more than he ever got in this world."

Grant, a native of Bellville, was embraced by the Ohio State community and those around him. Reed said Grant conducted a skull session and "Hang on Sloopy" at an Ohio State football game, and that he led the "O-H," "I-O" chants. The family also shared a meal with the Ohio State football team and received a visit in the hospital by then-head football coach Urban Meyer.

Even though Michigan was Ohio State's rival, then-Wolverines coach Brady Hoke invited Grant and his family up to Michigan for the Ohio State-Michigan game in 2013, when the Buckeyes won on a failed two-point conversion by Michigan. Reed said Grant thought it was "probably one of the best football games" he'd seen.

Reed said that Grant understood that sports are symbolism that extend beyond the game.

"It's about life," Reed said. "It's a game, but sometimes it can provide us with motivation."

Grant had survived two tumors, but in August 2018, the tumors returned. Reed said in Sunday's Facebook post that Grant's tumors were aggressively growing, and that last night instead of pursuing "aggressive interventions," the family decided to "keep him comfortable."

The past six years and nine months were a journey both for the Reed family and the community, Reed said.

"We’re so thankful for the support we’ve received around the country and in the world," Reed said. "It’s been wonderful. It was wonderful to know that he was able to touch so many lives on this earth."

Reed said he will post funeral arrangements when they are available.

esutelan@dispatch.com

@EdwardSutelan

Source : https://www.dispatch.com/news/20190211/grant-reed--2000-2019-ohio-state-fan-battling-childhood-tumors-named-cancer-michigan

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