This Homecoming will be special for AJ Raebel. Actually, all the Homecomings from here on out will be quite special for him. Raebel, who graduated in May 2009, looks at life a little different these days. “I don’t take the little things in life for granted anymore,” Raebel said. “Just things like playing catch and going for a run are gifts.”
It wasn’t the news AJ Raebel wanted to hear, but he’s sure not going to stop fighting now. The former two-time All-American linebacker, who was diagnosed with testicular cancer last November, learned last week he will need to have surgery to remove his lymph nodes.
When the news first spread in January that AJ Raebel was diagnosed with testicular cancer, many knew that they had to help the former UW-Whitewater football player in some fashion. Many have helped through the Cure 33 Fund, but tonight inside the Kachel Gymnasium there will be another opportunity for students and community members to show their support for the two-time All-American linebacker.
The thought was in AJ Raebel’s mind for nearly eight months. Yet, he tried to put that thought out of his mind and no where near the surface. That is until he had no choice. “The pain got worse,” said Raebel, who last played on the UW-Whitewater football team during the 2007 season when the Warhawks won their first national championship in school history.