T.F. South's Josh Crosby is enjoying both his senior season and life.
Crosby's goal is to make it ot the Class 3A finals at The Den at Fox Creek Golf Course in Bloomington. Last year, he made it to sectionals but struggled.
"I've put in a lot more time; I am at the course almost every day," Crosby said. "I am playing with confidence and have been working on different parts of my game."
His on-the-course struggles are nothing compared to what he faced when he was in fifth grade. Crosby was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in 2006. He has been cancer-free for about four years.
His symptoms started when he began having pain in his knees. After visits to several orthopedic doctors, the family went to some specialists and an MRI revealed the bad news.
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or ALL, is a form of cancer characterized by the proliferation of malignant, immature white blood cells. They continuously multiply and crowd out normal cells in bone marrow before spreading to other organs. In a 2011 Times article, Crosby talked about how he hated Sunday nights because he knew he had to go to the University of Illinois Medical Center for chemotherapy.
He now speaks with groups and has been involved with fundraising and support for groups like the St. Baldrick's Day cancer fundraiser.
"I feel I can tell my story and make those (stricken with cancer) feel a little more comfortable," Crosby said. "I am fortunate that I am still here and can go to school, play golf and enjoy life. I tell those to go out, do what you have to do and enjoy your life. Get the treatment and remain strong."
Crosby said he used to be shy and did not like to talk in front of people, but he does it all the time when he talks about ALL.
Crosby said he won;t forget the support he received from his family and friends. Laurie, his mom, said two years ago how tough it was for her or any parent to see their child suffer.
"It's not so much what me, my husband and family went through, it was what Josh had to go through," she said at the time. "The chemo, the spinal taps, medicine. He had to take 14 pills or so a day and he didn't want to take them, but I told him, 'Josh, you have to take your medicine or you are going to die.'"