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Olympics winner Alexandros Nikolaidis dies of rare cancer form at 42

Twice Olympics Tae Kwon Do silver medalist Alexandros Nikolaidis passed away at the age of 42. He was battling an extreme rare form of cancer for the last two years. Nikolaidis had also served as deputy spokesman for the main opposition party left-wing SYRIZA.

The great athlete and father two young children practically announced his own death with a post on his social media accounts.

If even one child is saved, it will be worth every kick in the head, every broken leg. This is the imprint I want to leave on society, this is the legacy I want to leave to my children.”

His heartbreaking message begins: “I’ll start with this cliché that if you read this post now I’ve probably left for somewhere better or to nowhere.

For two years, I also suffered from cancer. With such a rare type of cancer, nut carcinoma, that currently nine out of ten Greek doctors who read it, are hearing of it for the first time and rush to look it up.”

Among others, he thanked his a team of doctors to keeping him alive so that that his youngest daughter, who was 3.5 when he was diagnosed, had time to have memories of him.

The doctor “moved heaven and earth, to bring medicines literally from the other side of the earth for me to try,” he wrote.

“My friends, in this life where we are all transients, what matters most is what footprint we leave, not how or when we leave.

For this reason, if I am the first registered patient with nut carcinoma in our country, let me be the reason for informing doctors and patients about this type of cancer which, if diagnosed in time, may save lives. Let’s be the occasion to essentially strengthen our national health system that has been so underestimated in recent years, not to wait in queues for an CT scan,  for a chemotherapy or an operation and to lose precious time, to stop the time-consuming labyrinth of bureaucracy and the EOF [National Drugs Organization] legal bottlenecks when potentially life-saving experimental drugs need to be approved immediately.”

He wrote about his last wish, to auction his silver medals for the sake of children.

“If we come to this life for a purpose, I have decided who it will be. To offer hope through what I have achieved in my life.” from the good to the bad.”

“For this reason, my two silver Olympic medals, from Athens and Beijing, which I have been hiding well for years, it is time to come out and return to where they belong, to universal values. My last wish is for these two medals to be auctioned and the amount collected to be given to structures for children chosen by my family.

“If even one child is saved, it will be worth every kick in the head, every broken leg. This is the imprint I want to leave on society, this is the legacy I want to leave to my children.”

Alexandros Nikolaidis would turn 43 on October 17.

His death has shocked Greeks and his legacy touches many souls.

NUT carcinoma

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