Earlier this week, KSR reader Philip sent me a story about his daughter, Ashley Lyles, a 35-year-old Marshall County native who is a UK alum and huge basketball fan. Lyles, who lives in Chicago, went to the hospital in December for a severe headache only to find out that she had rare, terminal brain cancer. According to doctors, Lyles had a Grade IV glioblastoma tumor, an extremely aggressive and fast-growing form of cancer with a prognosis of one or two years.
On December 22, Ashley had surgery to remove the tumor, although it cannot be totally eradicated. That morning, John Calipari sent this tweet of encouragement:
— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) December 22, 2015
Here’s a picture of Ashley and Cal from better days:
Since then, Ashley started radiation five times a week and chemo seven times a week. She cut off her hair to be used to make wigs for cancer patients, and even had the hairdresser shave a “UK” into the side:
Ashley’s friends and family have started a “Sparkle for Ashley” campaign to raise money and awareness for her cause, and upon seeing the picture last week, the UK basketball team posed with a “UK Sparkles for Ashley” sign, as you can see at the top of the page. The team told her they’d win the South Carolina game for her, and they did, in spectacular fashion.
Philip said the outpouring of support for his daughter has been overwhelming and has lifted Ashley’s spirits; however, she goes on disability next month and her expenses are mounting. Her friends started a GoFundMe page to raise money for her treatments. If you’re interested in donating, please click here and also visit her Facebook group, Ashley’s Angels. Ashley has pledged to donate any funds not used for her treatments to brain cancer research.
For the past several years, Philip and Ashley have taken a father/daughter trip to the SEC Tournament, and her six weeks of treatments end two weeks before the tournament begins. If she feels strong enough, Ashley plans to be there with her dad to cheer the Cats on.
I’ll leave you with a plea from Philip for his daughter:
“If you would please end it with a plea for prayers from the BBN on her behalf. She’s truly in God’s hands.”