WMBD/WYZZ-TV - NORMAL, Ill. -- Like any other college thrower, Chris McIntyre relies on his power to compete.
But in his sophomore year, the Illinois State thrower saw some of that power go away.
"I just started noticing some complications with my body," said McIntyre. "I just didn't feel like myself. I had been feeling more down. After blood work and results came back, they found it was Leukemia."
His cancer is in remission and he's back in the shot put and discuss ring. You simply can't forget a thing like Leukemia, but McIntyre says he's used the process to strengthen himself.
"I have to push myself to get into the mentality of competing again," said McIntyre. "It's just a little challenging."
In January, the Missouri Valley Conference took notice, and gave McIntyre the league's "Most Courageous Award" for his fight. And more importantly for his victory.
"It was a great honor," said McIntyre. "After what I have been through, just to be acknowledged that way was pretty supportive."
He's been an inspiration to the Redbirds since returning to the team after his treatments.
"Sometimes things happen for a reason, we never can put our fingers on it," said ISU track coach Elvis Forde. "But I hope it's one of those things that has humbled Chris in some way, but at the same time opened his eyes to the many things he can do when obstacles come your way."
Added McIntyre: "Just know that you should never give up ever.No matter how hard it may be. Whatever is in front of, you have to take a step at it and fight through it."
Words he continues to live by.