Friday, December 10, 2021
Believing and achieving is now more important than ever for B2009 ECNL player Ethan Vue as he faces a new challenge, battling Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) that was diagnosed Thanksgiving weekend.
A natural leader on his team, Ethan Vue created a team mantra earlier in the year on a road trip – IF YOU CAN BELIEVE… YOU CAN ACHIEVE. And as the team and community rally to support his efforts to fight his cancer, it takes on a whole new meaning and focus.
“We were in San Diego, our first real “road trip” as a team, and he started saying it in the van on the way to our first game,” said head coach John Palladino. “It might be a quote from a movie he was watching… I’m not sure. Anyway, he had everyone in the van rolling with laughter when he’d throw this phrase at the end of some crazy story. Next thing I know – we are all rolling out of the van to our first game yelling “If you can believe, YOU CAN ACHIEVE! The rest of the boys from the other van picked up on it without missing a beat – everybody following Ethan’s lead in unison during our whole warm up. It was amazing to see him just naturally getting everyone fired up. It worked, and it’s stuck ever since. We say it at every training, before and after every game. It’s our mantra, our motto. And Ethan gave it to us.”
In an effort to support Ethan and the Vue family during this challenging time coach Palladino has helped organize a fundraiser featuring hats themed with his number 19 and BeliEVe, which denotes Ethan’s initials in an alternate color. The hats are available in several designs for $40 each, though individuals can donate through the fundraiser without ordering the hat or add additional funds to the order.
“Ethan is the kind of kid who lights up a room. He’s got that special energy, the contagious positivity, the love of life that makes everyone around him happier. On the field, he is no different. His love and joy to play spreads across the whole pitch, and everyone can feel it. He’s the kind of young man who naturally makes his teammates better not just because he is exceptionally talented, but because his positivity and joy remind us all to love the game.”
And Ethan’s leadership and mantra helped lead the B2009 ECNL squad to a 2-3-2 start to the conference slate in the fall portion of the schedule through early November.
After the first portion of the ECNL season came to a close though, Ethan’s new challenge began to show signs. He was experiencing some chest pain, difficulty breathing, and was getting tired easier than normal. At that point his father, Jay, took him to get examined.
They found a tumor in his lymphatic system in his chest. Initially they thought it was not cancerous, which was hopeful, but after blood testing they found out otherwise. On Thanksgiving day he was admitted to the ICU where they diagnosed him with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL).
Although the initial prognosis is positive, he spent a little over a week in the ICU and was then transferred to the Children’s Hospital at Sacred Heart, where he has been undergoing chemo treatments.
“Ethan is fighting hard, and staying strong through the ups and downs of all of the various tests and treatments. He has had spinal taps, bone marrow tests, chemo therapy… etc. Some days he has energy and likes to walk the halls, but other days he is too weak.
“The goal at this point is to get him strong enough and abate his pain so that he can go home, and be partially in/out patient so that he can check in for his treatments and go home after he regains strength. It is a day-to-day, moment-to-moment battle for Ethan, and we all need to keep him in our thoughts and prayers.”