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If you watched Dancing with the Stars this season, the biggest thing on your mind was probably that episode when protesters ran on stage to attack Ryan Lochte. Asides from that bit of extreme live television, everything must have seemed same old same old for the 23rd season of the competition program, but underneath the apparent normalcy, co-host Erin Andrews was going through one of the most important battles of her life: cancer. The journalist had been diagnosed with cervical cancer, and in addition to not telling her fans, she didn't tell her colleagues at Dancing with the Stars either.
According to in-depth profile by Sports Illustrated, no one at Dancing with the Stars or Fox Sports knew that Erin Andrews was battling cervical cancer. Diagnosed in June, Andrews declined to let her colleagues know that she would be undergoing cancer treatments. It was simply business as usual Andrews, who made an effort to miss as little work as possible. Andrews began receiving her cancer treatments in October and reportedly only missed two tapings of Dancing with the Stars. As for all her producers and colleagues knew, she was supporting her fiance (then boyfriend) Jarret Stoll, which was partly true; Stoll's nephew had been recently killed in a car accident. While she did console Stoll, she also needed time for herself.
Andrews received two treatments in total: one in October and one in November. Two nights after her first surgery, Andrews was on the red-eye from LA to Green Bay to film a feature with Packers wideout Jordy Nelson in the morning. That Sunday, despite the reservations from her doctor, Andrews reported from the sidelines of the Packers-Cowboys game. Only football and Dancing were on her mind and she kept herself focused on work; there was no way she was going to miss the Super Bowl (it's Fox's turn to broadcast this year).
Thankfully, Andrews has been given the all-clear from her doctors after the latest treatment and she will not need to go through radiation or chemotherapy. As of now, she's cancer free, proving all the while that she is one insanely strong person -- not that anybody really needed to be reminded of that.
Andrews' cancer diagnosis came only shortly after she had finally settled her highly publicized lawsuit with the companies that own the Nashville Marriot. The sports journalist sued the hotel after a peeping tom filmed her naked in her hotel room, resulting in a traumatizing and often times humiliating trial. Andrews received some solace in the form of $55 million in damages, and only when things started to look up again, did she receive the news of her diagnosis.
It certainly hasn't been an easy year for Andrews, but she came out on top in the end. We look forward to catching her on the sidelines during Super Bowl LI, which airs Sunday, February 5, at 6:30 p.m. EST on Fox. Alternatively, you can also watch Erin Andrews on Dancing with the Stars, returning for Season 24 on Monday, March 20.