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Parker’s Perseverance: Homestead coach fights past cancer surgery, with help from his daughter

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Rod Parker and Rylie Parker

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21) -- Nobody goes through a fight like this alone.

This past November, Homestead head coach Rod Parker got an unexpected cancer diagnosis. His daughter, Rylie, and the rest of the family were shocked by the news.

"He's never sick," Rylie said. "Never has a cold, nothing's ever wrong with him. So, just hearing the news, we were like, 'this is real life.' So for every time he's been there for us, we needed to step up and be there for him this time."

Rod had to step away from the team for a short while following his surgery, but he was impressed with how his daughter handled that adverse situation.

"It was very rewarding to see her stay strong and continue to be a captain for her team, our program, and to help lead them and stay competitive and do what she needed to do," Rod said.

Parker returned to lead the Lady Spartans in mid-January, and his short-term prognosis is encouraging. He won't have to endure radiation or chemotherapy for now, but there are many more tests to come.

For now, Rod, Rylie, and the Lady Spartans can focus on their next challenge. Regional Saturday.

A message from Rod and Rylie Parker

Tonight on ABC21 WPTA at 6pm, we'll check in with Homestead girls basketball coach Rod Parker, and his daughter Rylie. Parker has battled cancer this season, but fought hard to return to his team after his surgery.Before the story airs, Rod and Rylie wanted to share this message of gratitude, for all the suppor their family received during this challenging time.

Posted by Zach Groth - ABC21 on Friday, February 14, 2020

Zach Groth

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