Reporters are supposed to be objective and keep their emotions in check on the job, but it was hard to keep the tears at bay Friday night at River View.
Fans were out at the gym to root on basketball player Abi Hamlin, in remission from acute myelogenous leukemia. She started Friday night against Wahluke after being diagnosed not even 10 months ago. After four rounds of chemotherapy, she returned home and got strong enough to play basketball. That was her goal last spring, when she was hospitalized in Seattle.
I talked to her on the phone when she was in the hospital, and Abi's resolve was as strong then as it is today. Seeing her in the locker room before the game, braiding her teammates' hair, laughing and dancing, was a sight to behold. This was the same girl who said she mentally and physically struggled after a particularly difficult chemotherapy treatment during the summer.
Now, with her first game under her belt, she has accomplished something that might have appeared impossible a few months ago.
"I hope it's just a sign for people that I'm back, doing good," Hamlin said. "People doubted me, and I wanted to show them I can play. I am not done."
The comeback kid has made me and a gymful of supporters believe that.