Athletes are often so adored that fans forget they are human.
That is, until adversity strikes.
Then everyone remembers that an athlete can suffer from the same problems as everyone else.
Cancer, disease, catastrophic injuries.
I'm not talking about one heroic performance (a.k.a. Curt Schilling's bloody sock). I'm talking about athletes who have faced death, but returned to perform at the highest level of their sport.
After beginning this article, I realized that it's nearly impossible to rank someone's suffering. Instead, this is just a list of 15 athletes who have beat the odds. I am sure there are countless more stories than the 15 I have found, but they are all worth reading.
Let's take a look.