Frank Chamberlin, a former linebacker who spent five seasons in the NFL from 2000 to 2005, died Sunday after a year-long battle with brain cancer.
He was 35.
"Frank is at peace. Whole, healed and smiling down from heaven. Nothing in this world will ever be the same," reads a statement from FightForFrank.org, a website the Chamberlin family set up to help mitigate the cost of treatment.
As noted by Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean, in 2012 Chamberlin was diagnosed with a serious form of brain cancer (an anaplastic astrocytoma, per FightForFrank) after suffering a seizure at his job at a financial services firm.
He then underwent surgery in an attempt to remove the tumor, but doctors were only able to partially remove it, and he'd been undergoing treatment ever since. The surgery left Chamberlin with weakness in his right arm, recurring seizures and difficulty speaking.
According to Jessica Mazzola of Wyckoff (N.J.) Patch, after his diagnosis, Chamberlin and his wife Lisa traveled to Germany so that he could undergo an experimental treatment called Immunotherapy, which uses a patient's cells to attempt to create a vaccine designed to wipe his body of cancer.
Chamberlin's last days were a far cry from his days on the football field, where he emerged as a four-year letterman at Boston College before heading to the NFL. Initially recruited as a fullback, Chamberlin found a home at linebacker for the Eagles and later won the Scanlan Award as a senior, which is given to the player who is "most outstanding in scholarship, leadership and athletic ability," per the school's official site.
Taken in the fifth round (160th overall) by the Tennessee Titans in the 2000 NFL draft, Chamberlin played three seasons with the club as a special teamer and backup linebacker. The Titans expressed their condolences on Twitter:
Former teammate Keith Bulluck also was saddened by the news:
Chamberlin later played five games with the Cincinnati Bengals in 2003 and made nine appearances in 2005 with the Houston Texans, where he played his last NFL snaps.
In all, Chamberlin compiled 43 total tackles, one sack and a forced fumble in 57 games played, including three starts. After his playing career ended, he served as the equity sales vice president of the firm Keefe, Bruyette & Woods in Manhattan. He and his family also settled in Wyckoff, N.J., not too far away from where he graduated at Mahwah High School in 1996.
Chamberlin is survived by Lisa and the couple's three daughters, Leah, Brooke and Micaela.
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